September 28, 2020

PYMNTS.com: Why 2021 Is No Sure Bet For An SMB Rebound

As 2020 limps toward its exhausting conclusion, get ready for a massive rebound in 2021 — for consumer spending, for small- to medium-sized businesses’ (SMBs’) top lines, and for the U.S. economy in general. Maybe not.

PYMTSIn an interview with Karen Webster, MerchantE Chief Financial Officer Shim Steinmetz cautioned that many variables are at play, which makes divining the future a bit dicey. “I actually think that 2021 may not be a good year — I’ll be blunt in saying that,” he told Webster.

He noted that we seem to be in the midst of what might be termed a rolling industry recession marked by stubbornly high unemployment, sector by sector. Add to the mix the continued uncertainty of the election, the mounting death toll tied to the pandemic, and the murky horizon of a vaccine — and the recovery seems a way off.

“A significant percentage of American families have been affected by a trauma,” he said. “That trauma is just going to bleed into behavior at least until the beginning of next year. There can be an economic impact from that sadness — and a lack of spending.”

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