On Sunday, March 15th, the United States Federal Reserve lowered the interest rate to 0 percent in an effort to prevent the country from falling into another financial crisis due to the Coronavirus. Although this strategy is common for the Fed to implement to encourage investments, this situation is entirely different.
As of April 4, there were a total of 188,247 confirmed cases within the United States alone. In Washington State, Governor Jay Inslee announced that all schools will be closed until April 24th, and restaurants until March 31st. This is all in an effort to prevent and flatten the exponential possibility of the coronavirus. As a result of this social distancing, local businesses have suffered a great deal due to the increased anxiety of catching the virus.
Known as one of the most popular tourist attractions in Washington State, Pike Place Market has typically made millions of dollars annually according to the Pike Place Market website. Nearly every single day of the week, hundreds of local farmers and businesses come together in the farmers market to sell their goods and services.
Photo taken by: Lesley Balla
However, the Coronavirus has been detrimental to Washington State’s local small businesses which can be shown through Washington State’s, Pike Place Market. As seen below, it is nearly empty during busy hours on a normal weekday.
Photo taken by: Jennifer Tai
Large corporations and businesses will without a doubt benefit from the Fed lowering the interest rates, however, small local businesses are the ones suffering the most. People will take advantage of the lower interest rates by investing more and refinancing their home mortgages, but as long as the Coronavirus is causing fear within American households and causing social distancing, the amount of investment may not make up for the consumption that is lost in the end.
If you are looking for a way to help support these local businesses, you can always order take out or visit local businesses. Although many are closed, there are quite a few businesses that are staying open, taking online orders, takeout and deliveries.