COVID-19 and the Stock Market
When disaster strikes, the weak suffer mightily, the strong only slightly. That is the lesson from stock market reactions to COVID-19. Strong firms had a robust financial position, advanced environmental and social performance, and were not severely exposed to social distancing and lockdowns. Firms with significant international exposure suffered more, at least at first. The ultimate effects of policy interventions, including those by central banks, have yet to be revealed. The market recovery in the second quarter of 2020 is like a patient recovering from COVID-19: hopeful but still uncertain. Managers and policymakers should project the future with great caution.