7 Industries from 7 News Sources; Let’s See How Things Are Going

If you follow our blog you know that we are in the energy industry, specifically electric and natural gas supply, where we broker deals for large C&I. When COVID hit Kristin and I had to readjust our day to day operations (90% in-person business to 100% not) but were lucky that market dips helped to grow our business. As the energy market is in a 25-year low, we sprang into action to help our current and potential clients take advantage of the market, strategically of course. We closed more business then I thought we would during a pandemic and we’re still trucking away. But, how are other industries dealing with COVID, more specifically are they growing or scaling back? Using my news app on the iPhone, I scrolled through searching for articles about different industries and the impactfulness of COVID. In striving to be as unbiased as possible, I choose 7 different lines of work (real estate, automotive, online stores, gig work, publishing, small business hardware, and alcoholic beverages) sourced from 7 different news organizations (Forbes, Sky News, BBC, Fox Business, Publishers Weekly, Independent.ie, and CNN Business). Here’s what they are saying:

Forbes on real estate by Dima Williams- “Fewer Americans Will Buy Homes In 2020, But Not Because Of Less Demand

Sourced from Realtor.com, new home listings usually see their peak in April but as we all know, COVID was prevalent at that time. This reflected only about half of the historical average of new listings with the largest declines in New York City (43%), Philadelphia (48%), and Milwaukee (64%). Homes that were already on the market before the virus hit the US, showed longer selling times. A second wave of COVID could bring home sales lower than the already 15% decrease we are seeing now.

Sky News on automotive- “Coronavirus: Demand for new cars falls by 34.9% as dealerships get used to ‘new normal’

This article is based in the UK, but as COVID is a global pandemic, I think it’s definitely worth sharing. Calculated from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), 145,377 new cars were registered in June, a fall from 223,421 the year before. With the uncertainty of economic stability, large purchases such as cars were bound to be put on hold, aside from the fact that dealerships were closed and most people want the in-person experience. How do you think US car sales are faring?

BBC on online retail- “Amazon’s Jeff Bezos: The richest person in the world

Even though this is probably common knowledge now, Bezos is now worth $171bn, making him the richest person in the world. When retail stores closed and essential stores experienced shortages, online retail became more of a norm. Stay at home orders steered the way for more people to order online, resulting in Amazon making tens of billions during COVID.

Fox Business on gig work- “Gig workers facing extreme new competition in coronavirus pandemic, severe unemployment

“With the coronavirus pandemic pummeling the global economy and U.S. unemployment reaching heights not seen since the Great Depression, gig workers are clamoring for jobs that often pay less while facing stiff competition from a crush of newly unemployed workers”. There are about 1.5 million gig workers in jobs such as rideshare services, food app delivery, childcare, and other freelance work. With a 50% increase in signups for freelance related work according to Upwork, competition is fierce. As Uber and Lyft business decreased in April, app food delivery such as Instacart more than doubled their employees.

Publishers Weekly on publishing- “Children’s Institute 2020: Covid and Protests Shape Booksellers’ Futures

Like every small business, especially brick and mortar, COVID forced business owners to think creatively. Local bookstores moved to online sales and promotion, delivered books by bike, and set up virtual events. But COVID isn’t the only factor changing the publishing industry. With protests pushing for justice and overall/overdue equality for the black community, publishers are looking to add more multicultural books to their shelves such as company EyeSeeMe started in 2011.

Independent.ie on small business hardware- “Hard choices for hardware firms as Covid spurs change

Another outside of the US article but the same pattern in Ireland of small business vs. big chain reflects here too. As many of these small businesses are family-owned, it’s up to the next generation to continue the trade. Yet with some next of kin opting of the family business, these stores were prepping to close on a high note, then COVID hit. The Hardware Association is now working with businesses in pushing to bring back certain government incentives that previously provided tax incentives for labor costs. Just as in the US, small business relief is essential.

CNN Business on alcoholic beverages by Jordan Valinsky- “Boozy ice cream and pizza crusts: How spiked seltzer is evolving beyond beverages

Spiked seltzer isn’t just a social media phase and brands like Truly, White Claw, and Cutwater Spirits soared in sales during the pandemic. Memorial Day drink sales hit $110 million, over a 200% increase compared to last year. All three brands are looking to capitalize on this growth by adding new products, but not beverages. Truly launched boozy ice cream, Cutwater brings ice pops to the market, and White Claw started selling pizza crust? No word on the pizza sales figures yet, but I guess there’s no better time than now to experiment with the next best thing.

Written by Eva Gerrits