Social distancing.  Elbow bumps.  Flatten the curve.  These are the new phrases and behaviors we have learned to avoid exposure to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  This epic struggle forces us to reexamine and reevaluate our daily habits, lifestyles and customs as we work collectively to minimize the harm to our families, friends and neighbors throughout the United States.  While some of the lifestyle changes and limitations will be temporary, the human and economic effects of COVID-19 will be profound and, as always, the disruption undoubtedly will lead to increased innovation and societal change.

In the restructuring arena, many effects are direct and foreseeable.  Workers and businesses in the travel, restaurant, retail, hospitality and gaming industries will be immediately and severely challenged as their customers choose or are forced to stay home. The Centre for Aviation reports that without a significant government bailout, several major airlines will be bankrupt by mid-May.  Government mandated shopping center and restaurant closures will exacerbate the already severe challenges facing the retail industry, and disruptions in the global supply chain create inventory pressures for retailers and manufacturers alike.  And, as employees suffer reductions in the work-force, reduced income, medical debt and stock market losses, discretionary spending will decrease.  Regardless of whether you were bullish or bearish on 2020 last week, the financial impact of COVID-19 will be real and undeniable.


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