While there is a degree of uncertainty surrounding the exact rate at which the U.S. economy is recovering, growth is forecasted in 2021 and beyond.
But while the outlook will inevitably improve for some sectors, such as the leisure and hospitality industry, other business trends caused by COVID-19 may be here to stay, according to Leigh-Ann Wilkins, economic outreach associate for the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
Speaking at the Berks Alliance Community Forum hosted by the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance, Wilkins indicated changes in commuting patterns could impact small businesses beyond the pandemic.
Specifically, if workers continue to work remotely on a full- or even part-time basis, that could have a lasting effect on businesses located near places of employment.
“Close to one-fifth of people report that they now work from home every day,” Wilkins said, citing a Federal Reserve survey. “The share of those commuting every day has dropped from around three-quarters to a half.