The worldwide coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has thrown the global economy into turmoil, crashing asset markets, shattering investor sentiment, and grinding business activity to a halt across a swathe of small, medium, and large industries.
Nevertheless, despite the threat of a global recession, many industries have proven to be remarkably resilient to the pandemic’s ongoing effects on the economy. As supply-demand conditions continue to evolve, some industries are benefitting from the unexpected shift in the global economic landscape.
So, without further ado, here are 10 industries that haven’t been trampled by the COVID-19 downturn.
1. Online Brokerages
Online brokerages have been surprisingly resilient to the coronavirus-induced selloff in global equity markets. Despite the onset of bear market conditions, online brokerages have seen a massive increase in trading volume. As face-to-face brokers struggle to compete, online brokerages are also benefitting from a considerable increase in new account activations. In the U.S. and Canada, major brokerages have doubled their usual month-to-month new user signups.
Put simply, most new online brokerage customers are looking for an easy-to-use platform for low-commission trading or passive investing. If you’re looking to join an online brokerage, Questrade (leader in Canada) is currently offering $0 account fees and brokerage-free ETF portfolios.
2. Online Health Platforms
With much of the Western world practicing social isolation, there has been a surge in demand for online medical services, such as autonomous robo health advisors or telehealth consultation platforms. As more and more countries enter long-term quarantines, existing online medical platforms are trialing a wide range of new services, including app-based mental health counseling, diagnostic consultations via video or image exchange, and video conferencing for post-operative advisements.
3. Remote Learning Services
To reduce COVID-19 transmission rates and help flatten the curve, hundreds of schools and universities around the world have been temporarily closed. Faced with an unplanned shutdown with an unknown end date, many education institutions have made a rapid shift towards distance education methods. This has led to a massive increase in the user base of online education tools, platforms, and portals, propelling substantial growth in the remote learning industry.
4. Video Conferencing Platforms
Similar to remote learning platforms, the video conferencing industry has experienced a sustained surge in demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In compliance with public health guidelines, many countries have initiated an enforced shutdown of non-essential businesses, pushing hundreds of thousands of workers into the unfamiliar territory of working from home. To keep things running smoothly, many businesses are willing to pay a premium for easy-to-use video conferencing platforms.
5. E-Commerce Sector
With a sizeable portion of the Western world’s workforce avoiding retail stores and staying at home, the demand for online shopping has never been higher. To cope with the massive increase in demand, Amazon has announced that it’s hiring another 100,000 warehouse and delivery workers. In addition to heightened levels of demand for everyday items, the e-commerce industry has also benefited from a glut of new customers who have been forced into online shopping due to social distancing polices and the closure of high street brick and mortar stores.
6. Grocery Stores
With restaurants closed, more and more people are practicing their home cooking and baking skills, leading to a sharp uptick in online and in-person grocery purchases. In fact, according to the New York Times, there has been a 50-fold increase in Amazon grocery orders since lockdowns began in the U.S. As you might guess, the sales rate for basic necessities, such as toilet paper and non-perishable foodstuffs, has been particularly high.
7. Meal Delivery Services
In lieu of going to a restaurant or cafe, many hungry individuals working from home are turning towards meal delivery services, such as DoorDash or UberEATS, for their daily fix of comfort food. To help you stick to social isolation, meal delivery companies have also launched a range of grocery store partnerships to deliver essentials to your doorstep.
8. Home Fitness Equipment Suppliers
With gyms and physical recreation studios shutting down, fitness buffs have rushed to stock up on home gym equipment, buying everything from skipping ropes to dumbbells. As demand continues to skyrocket, home fitness equipment suppliers are capitalizing on the rush of new customers, driving increased memberships to online workout services and meal planning apps.
9. Streaming Services
Streaming services are among the biggest beneficiaries of a long-term COVID-19 lockdown. With everyone stuck at home and live sports cancelled, increasingly bored individuals are turning to streaming services, such as Netflix or Disney Plus, for a prolonged dose of bingeworthy entertainment.
10. Mobile, PC, and Console Gaming
With so many people working from home, the allure of midday gaming has never been stronger. As a result, major gaming companies, many of which are currently registering millions of new users and higher than average in-game purchase numbers, have managed to avoid steep declines in the stock market.