Embargoed for Release Until December 7, 2021
New research reveals the economic costs of behavioral responses to the pandemic in the U.S.
Throughout its unsteady course, the COVID-19 pandemic has altered the behavior of businesses and households. Those behavioral changes, intensified by government actions like mandatory closures, have had a reverberating impact on the U.S. economy.
A new study led Adam Rose, research professor at University of Southern California’s Price School of Public Policy, analyzes the economic impacts of specific behavioral responses such as closures, re-openings, workplace avoidance, and a reduction in entertainment activities, as well as federal government stimulus packages. He will present the study, “The Impact of COVID-19 on the U.S. Economy: The Role of Avoidance Behavior and Resilience,” during the Society for Risk Analysis Virtual Annual Meeting, Dec. 5-9 in Washington, DC.
The analysis tracked the broader economic ramifications of individual responses of producers and consumers through domestic supply-chain interactions and international trade linkages between the U.S. and other regions. This method allowed the researchers to trace the ripple effects of direct behavioral responses to the pandemic, including resilience (telework and deferred spending) and avoidance behavior (relating to public transportation, mass gatherings, and in-person shopping).
“Businesses and households changed their behavior greatly in response to the pandemic and some of those will linger throughout the recovery,” says Rose.
Here are some of the most significant findings:
The researchers have developed an analytical framework that can be used not only to estimate economic consequences of pandemics, but other types of disasters, Rose adds. “The results can be used by policymakers to fine-tune countermeasures relating to aspects of a broad range of disasters, including mandatory business closures, stay-at-home orders, health policy, and stimulus packages.”
“The Impact of COVID-19 on the U.S. Economy: The Role of Avoidance Behavior and Resilience will be presented on Dec. 8 from 10AM EST to 10:15AM EST during the symposium Economics of Supply Chain and Disaster Risk Management.