Industries Americans do and don’t think deserve government aid

grocery store cashier coronavirusgrocery store cashier coronavirus

A strong majority of Americans believe grocery stores should get financial help from the government.

Jeff Greenberg / Contributor/Getty Images


  • Brunswick, a strategic advisory firm focused on critical issues, is running a weekly survey asking Americans about their attitudes on returning to work and feelings about the novel coronavirus pandemic.
  • The firm’s most recent survey asked a question about which industries that have seen big shocks from the pandemic should and should not receive financial assistance from the government. 
  • Brunswick found about 83% of respondents believe grocery stores should qualify, while only 31% believe casinos should.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The novel coronavirus pandemic has caused a decline in revenue and consumer demand as well as a rise in layoffs and furloughs across various industries. However, Americans believe certain industries and businesses deserve government financial assistance more than others.

In an exclusive partnership with Business Insider, Brunswick, a strategic advisory firm focused on critical issues, is conducting a weekly survey to a sample of American workers about their attitudes regarding the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Respondents were asked about 11 industries that have been hit especially hard by the economic fallout from the outbreak and whether or not they believed the government should provide financial assistance to those industries.

A majority of respondents at least somewhat agree that retail and grocery stores should qualify for assistance, while cruises and casinos should not.

Grocery stores have been classified as essential during the pandemic, but non-essential retail outlets have had to lay off or furlough employees. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that clothing and accessory stores alone lost nearly 740,000 jobs in April.

The following are the 11 industries in order of increasing share of respondents saying they somewhat or mostly agree that the government should provide assistance:

11. Casinos: 31% of Americans support a bailout, while 69% are opposed.

casino las vegas coronavirus



John Locher/AP


The majority of respondents believe casinos shouldn’t qualify for financial assistance from the government, with 40% strongly disagreeing that the industry should qualify.

Casinos in Las Vegas started to temporarily close in March, and casinos are considering new safety measures for when they reopen. Casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and in Pennsylvania have reported a decline in revenue due to closures. 

Small casinos with fewer than 500 employees can apply for the federal government’s small-business loan program to get some financial assistance, according to the Washington Post.

10. Cruise lines: 41% of Americans support a bailout, while 59% are opposed.

Royal Caribbean passengers cruise ship



Gerardo Garcia / Reuters


The cruise line industry has taken a financial hit after a large number of cancellations during the pandemic. 

Several cruise ships had outbreaks of coronavirus, including the Coral Princess cruise ship that had at least 12 cases and the Diamond Princess Cruise ship that had around 700 cases when it docked in February in Japan. 

The survey respondents’ skepticism toward government support for the cruise industry is similar to that of research analysts interviewed by Forbes in March. They believed it will be more difficult for the industry to argue for a federal bailout than other sectors in the travel industry.

Although the $2 trillion stimulus package helped various industries, Business Insider’s Joseph Zeballos-Roig reported the package didn’t include aid for the cruise line industry because “most major cruise liners aren’t incorporated in the United States, meaning they set up their operations offshore.” 

9. Movie theaters: 55% of Americans support a bailout, while 45% are opposed.

4d movie theater movie goers




StockLite/Shutterstock



Movie theater attendance was already falling before the pandemic forced theaters to temporarily close as theaters competed with online streaming services. 

However, the pandemic might not stop viewers from seeing movies in theaters in the future.

A survey from analytics company EDO of over 6,800 Americans found around 75% said they were either somewhat or very likely to see a movie again in a theater once they reopen, but 45% of respondents said they would wait a few weeks.

6 (tie). Automakers: 60% of Americans support a bailout, while 40% are opposed.

Dana Inc. assembly technician Brandon Green wears a face mask as he works to assemble axles for automakers, as the auto industry begins reopening amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at the Dana plant in Toledo, Ohio,U.S., May 18, 2020. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook



Reuters/Rebecca Cook


First quarter sales from different automakers dropped, and analysts predict second quarter figures will be worse. Motor vehicle and parts manufacturing lost 381,000 jobs and motor vehicle and parts dealers lost 345,000 jobs in April, according to BLS figures.

6 (tie). Art institutions: 60% of Americans support a bailout, while 40% are opposed.

Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center



Siegfried Layda/Getty Images


Many art institutions had to close their doors early on in the pandemic in the US, causing some to consider laying off or furloughing staff.

The Metropolitan Opera, for instance, laid off all of its union employees in mid-March and had to cancel shows for the rest of the season.

5. Museums: 62% of Americans support a bailout, while 38% are opposed.

the met Metropolitan Museum of Art New York



Atlantide Phototravel/Getty Images


Similar to art institutions, over 60% of respondents at least somewhat agree that museums should receive government assistance.

Museums started to temporarily close in March. However, some might not be able to reopen after the coronavirus. Based on analysis conducted by UNESCO and the International Council of Museums reported by ART News, 13% of museums might close permanently after the pandemic because of “major financial losses.”

4. Airlines: 63% of Americans support a bailout, while 37% are opposed.

Airline travel



Scott Olson/Getty


Airlines have also taken a large financial hit because of a decline in consumer demand during coronavirus. Business Insider’s David Slotnick reported that some major airlines could go bankrupt as a result of the pandemic, with some airlines already in financial trouble before the outbreak.

The industry is getting a $50 billion federal bailout from the stimulus package, including $25 billion in payroll assistance.

3. Hotels: 65% of Americans support a bailout, while 35% are opposed.

coronavirus hotel cleaning

A Four Seasons Sultanahmet Hotel staff member disinfects a room in Istanbul, Turkey, on May 21, 2020.

REUTERS/Umit Bektas


Hotels have had had major job losses during state lockdowns. In April, the leisure and hospitality industries lost 7.7 million jobs based on figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics

The American Hotel & Lodging Association reported hotels have lost $25 billion in room revenue since mid-February and are “on pace to lose up to $400 million in room revenue per day based on current occupancy rates and revenue trends.”

2. Retail: 76% of Americans support a bailout, while 24% are opposed.

Dallas mall reopens coronavirus

Shoppers wear masks while walking at the Galleria Dallas mall in Dallas on Monday, May 4, 2020.

LM Otero/AP


Although retail stores are allowing curbside pick-up of items in recent weeks, the retail sector has taken a financial hit as places had to temporarily close during the outbreak. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that retail lost 2.1 million jobs in April, with clothing and accessory stores alone losing nearly 740,000 jobs.

1. Grocery stores: 83% of Americans support a bailout, while 17% are opposed.

grocery store cashier coronavirus

A strong majority of Americans believe grocery stores should get financial help from the government.

Jeff Greenberg / Contributor/Getty Images


Brunswick noted in their analysis that there is more than a 10 percentage point difference in support for government assistance between grocery stores and retail, the second highest sector. Grocery stores also had the highest share of respondents that strongly agree out of the 11 industries at 53%. 

Grocery stores have been one of the few places that have stayed open during the pandemic because they were classified as essential businesses in most state guidelines. Workers are keeping stores stocked as best they can to help Americans get supplies and food throughout quarantine, putting their own health at risk

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By |2020-05-26T23:27:02+00:00May 26th, 2020|Business|0 Comments

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