Anecdotes like Mr. Geismann’s, nonetheless, aren’t easy to interpret. Maybe Schuchart and corporations like it might have discovered one other approach to make ends meet, or would have rehired employees rapidly as soon as development tasks resumed.
Economists have tried to reply that query utilizing knowledge. Mr. Autor in contrast corporations with just below 500 staff — which might qualify for this system’s unique model — with these simply above that measurement, which couldn’t. If the loans have been an enormous assist, then the smaller corporations ought to have retained many extra of their employees. As a substitute, Mr. Autor discovered little distinction between the 2 teams.
However some economists argue that such analysis understates this system’s impression as a result of it fails to deal with the smallest companies, which have been much less prone to have giant money reserves or different financing.
One paper, based mostly on a survey of companies in Oakland, Calif., discovered that these receiving P.P.P. loans have been 20.5 p.c extra prone to say they anticipated to outlive six months — however that the comparatively larger optimism was restricted to companies with fewer than 5 staff.
Robert Bartlett, one of many Oakland examine’s authors, stated economists like Mr. Autor could be proper that P.P.P. saved fewer jobs than hoped. “However for these small companies, I believe it helped them maintain their doorways open,” he stated. “I’m satisfied of that.” Lots of these companies, he famous, are in poor neighborhoods or are owned by racial or ethnic minorities.
Daniel G. Guerra Jr. based AltusLearn, which supplies coaching and compliance programs to medical employees, in 2013. By final 12 months the corporate, based mostly in Madison, Wis., had six staff and was on monitor for a 12 months of great development.
As a substitute, when the pandemic started, medical facilities halted just about all nonurgent care and canceled coaching.