Foretaste of the Lockdown-Driven Collapse in the Services & Retail Sectors: Holy Moly, What a Catastrophic Mess

by Wolf Richter
Wolf Street

Services account for 70% of the US economy. Here’s what’s happening to services and retail in economic powerhouse Texas.

The Texas Service Sector Outlook Survey, released by the Dallas Fed on March 31, is one of the first indicators as to what services more broadly – they account for about 70% of the US economy – will look like under lockdown. The data also includes the retail sector that’s an even bigger mess.

This is based on surveys of executives of 248 companies in the Texas service sector and of 56 companies in the retail sector. The companies are unnamed. The data was collected from March 17 through 25. It was on March 19 that Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a comparatively mild lockdown order. A few days later, major cities and counties issued tighter “stay at home” orders. All this happened within the survey collection period. Some of the announcements might have come too late to be fully reflected in the survey data. Nevertheless, the results were stunningly ugly.

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