Measuring the Effect of Pandemic Lockdowns on Economic Activity Within the St. Louis Metro Area

23 Pages Posted: 6 Jul 2021

See all articles by Lowell Ricketts

Lowell Ricketts

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Sami Cheong

Washington University in St. Louis

Date Written: May 5, 2021

Abstract

This paper uses Opportunity Insights Economic Tracker data for four of the largest counties within the St. Louis MSA to better understand the effect of stay-at-home public health orders (a.k.a lockdowns) on local economic activity. A difference-in-differences analysis finds that small business openings and small business revenue (measured by Womply) declined by 8.5 and 15.8 percentage points respectively during two weeks of extended stay at home orders (May 4-18, 2020) in St. Louis County and St. Louis City County versus St. Charles County and Jefferson County. In contrast, consumer card spending, employment, and unemployment insurance initial claims were not significantly different during this time period. The effects on small business openings found for the St. Louis counties were larger than those identified by Chetty et al. (2020) of state-level reopenings across the U.S.

Keywords: pandemic, small business, public health, St. Louis

JEL Classification: I18, R11, E65

Suggested Citation

Ricketts, Lowell and Cheong, Sami, Measuring the Effect of Pandemic Lockdowns on Economic Activity Within the St. Louis Metro Area (May 5, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3878456 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3878456

Lowell Ricketts (Contact Author)

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis ( email )

411 Locust St
Saint Louis, MO 63011
United States

Sami Cheong

Washington University in St. Louis ( email )

One Brookings Drive
Campus Box 1208
Saint Louis, MO MO 63130-4899
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
14
Abstract Views
98
PlumX Metrics