An analysis of 17 countries in Europe and Asia found that the COVID-19 crisis hit small- and medium-sized businesses hard: In the absence of government support, the 2020 bankruptcy rate would have almost doubled to 18% on average, with even higher rates in the hardest hit sectors and countries, researchers found.

Government interventions in most countries has cushioned some of the blow, and despite the severity of the shock, the banking sector showed resiliency. Banks did not appear to be significantly impacted by the rise in loan defaults, according to a recent National Bureau of Economic Research working paper co-authored by Clausen Center Faculty Director Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas.

> Read the full article