AZ Chamber Business News – Looking Towards Arizona’s Recovery After COVID-19
COVID-19’s viral spread beginning in early 2020 set back every economy on the face of the planet. Its downward effect on wages, employment, output, and other positive economic indicators devastated workers’ incomes (and job status), industries’ profits, and governments’ treasuries.
The United States federal government’s massive fiscal response to the pandemic mitigated some of these negative externalities over the course of one year, but the sustained impacts of the pandemic-induced recession continue to endure: unemployment is still almost double what it was in early 2020, many families lost loved ones to the virus, many businesses (particularly small businesses) went out of business, and many industries are still struggling to get back on their feet. In Arizona, tourism, entertainment, retail, and nonfarm jobs are still suffering.
Arizona economist Jim Rounds has argued that the best economic stimulus is widespread vaccination against COVID-19. Indeed, since the approval of the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines, the economy has seen growth. Nonetheless, less than half of Arizonans have received one shot, let alone two (Johnson & Johnson only requires one shot, whereas Pfizer and Moderna require two).