Along with assaulting the health of the nation, the CCP virus has inflicted a devastating blow on the economy, causing severe losses to tens of thousands of businesses and millions of households. During the outbreak, with quarantines, lockdowns, and social distancing, millions of people have become unemployed. Small to medium-sized businesses are the ones most severely hit. The longer this continues, the more companies will continue to incur heavy losses, and may even close their doors permanently. As worldwide economic pain and recession loom, there are, however, some sectors that are immune to the downturn, or at least are capable of surviving the economic crash caused by COVID-19.
Consumer staples are products like food, household goods, beverages, hygiene products, and the like, which are considered essential consumables. No matter the condition of an economy, people will always prioritize buying these goods over non-essentials like mobile phones, cars, books, and so on. As such, companies like Procter & Gamble that manufacture and sell such goods are in a better position to ride the economic recession and come out stronger once the market starts growing again.
Streaming websites like Netflix have seen a massive increase in new subscribers as well as video consumption. Since people are restricted to their homes, many will obviously use these services to kill time. As such, the video streaming industry is not only surviving but over-performing during the lockdown. Demand for videos has been so strong that some services like YouTube had to cut down the screen resolution offered to users. Even if lockdown restrictions were eased, demand for video streaming will at least remain at high levels since people have gotten used to this service.
Together with consumer staples, medical supplies are a critical item for most people. Cutting out medication to save some money is not something people would normally do unless they are pushed into extreme financial distress.
Some niches of the medical industry will also register significant growth. These include companies that manufacture COVID-19 testing kits, face masks, ventilators, and other medical supplies deemed critical to fighting the viral outbreak. The demand for herbs linked to traditional medicine will also remain steady as people will seek out traditional ways to boost their immunity and protect themselves from infection.
Hardcore gamers might well be smiling at the lockdown since they can do what they have always wanted — stay at home and game from morning to night. According to one report, the game streaming website Twitch registered an all-time high for hours streamed and hours watched during the first quarter of 2020. For the first time, Twitch registered 3 billion hours of watch time. Doom Eternal, released in mid-March, had the best opening sales weekend of the series.
Remote working tools and APS
With millions of people choosing to work from home, demand for remote working tools has skyrocketed. Video conferencing app Zoom had 10 million daily active users in December. This number has now jumped to a humongous 300 million users. Microsoft Teams, a hub for work collaboration, announced that the number of daily active users has reached 75 million users in April, up from 44 million the previous month. The longer the coronavirus restrictions exist, the more in-demand such tools will become.
Companies that provide essential utilities like electricity, water, natural gas, etc., are also shielded from the negative aspects of the COVID-19, by and large. After all, people can’t just decide that they will live without drinking water or electricity.
These services will temporarily see lower demand from businesses since offices will be closed during the lockdown. But the increased consumption from homes will keep their revenues afloat until restrictions are lifted.