Industry-specific risks of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced governments around the world to take drastic countermeasures. These unprecedented aid packages are often not tailored to specific industry needs, but are meant to support businesses in all parts of the economy. While such general programmes play a crucial role in stabilising financial markets in the short term, it is paramount for their long-term effectiveness to concentrate support to those areas of the economy that are most at risk.

In light of the extremely volatile development of the crisis, policy makers urgently require up-to-date empirical information about the economic situation.

We apply data mining to produce the CoRisk-Index, the first economic indicator of industry-specific business risk assessments associated with COVID-19. The index tracks the risk assessments in near real-time over the complete course of the crisis, starting end of January 2020, when the first firms in the US started to report about the coronavirus in financial disclosures. t can help to complement more traditional measures of economic activity, as it now casts how business perceive their corona-related risk exposure.

The findings suggest that some industries, such as Manufacturing and Retail, report strong exposure to supply shocks early on. Services sectors, such as Finance or Information, started to report about corona-related risks later on. As the crisis unfolds, the concerns have changed from travel and supply chain related issues to severe demand-related issues.


We find that negative sentiment of reports mentioning corona preempts global stock market developments. The CoRisk-Index will be updated constantly hroughout the crisis. The data can serve as a magnifier into the micro- and macro-level dynamics of the unfolding economic crisis. The CoRisk data supports economists and policymakers in effectively estimating and, ultimately, mitigating the economic shocks of the crisis.


You can contact the corresponding author Fabian Braesemann here