Nashville Has Reportedly Suffered the Steepest COVID-19 Consumer Spending Drop in the Nation



Nashville has suffered the steepest drop in consumer spending of any major metropolitan area in the U.S due to COVID-19, according to a report Wednesday in the Nashville Business Journal,

The Journal used information obtained from Harvard’s new Opportunity Insights Economic Tracker, working with Brown University and the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation to pull data from a variety of sources.

As of April 30, consumer spending had fallen 46 percent in the Nashville metro area as compared to mid-January, and reflects more than twice the 21 percent drop seen nationally, according to The Journal.

Meanwhile, small business revenue had fallen 31 percent, which is about nine percent less than the national decline, the Journal reported.

While the drop would seem expected due to the city’s perceived reliance on tourism, the budget book for the upcoming fiscal year reveals that, ranked fifth in the top 10, just 11.7 percent of Nashville’s employment is from the leisure and hospitality industry.

First in Nashville’s employment at 19.8 percent is trade, transportation and utilities industry.

Excluding government agencies, Nashville’s top employers include Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nissan North America, HCA Healthcare, Inc., Vanderbilt University, Saint Thomas Health, Community Health Systems, Randstad, Asurion, The Kroger Co. and National Healthcare Corp.

The outlook doesn’t look all that positive, given a recent S&P Global report that just seven percent of respondents to a survey about overall spending said they plan to spend more overall in the next 90 days than the same period in 2019.

That response represented a shift from just two months prior, when 30 percent of consumers said they planned more spending over the next 90 days and a month earlier when still 20 percent of consumer expected to increase spending according to S&P Global.

When travel – now at a near-standstill – resumes, it will likely start with road trips and be for weekend getaways and domestic versus international travel, reports CNBC.

That may bode well for Nashville, with 50 percent of the nation’s population living within 650 miles of the city.

Nashville’s financial woes were only exacerbated when Mayor John Cooper issued a stay-at-home order that went into effect at midnight on March 22 and didn’t initiate Phase I of the four-phase reopening plan until May 11, while 89 Tennessee counties began reopening at the end of April.

As Nashville wraps up the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, 2020, a shortfall of $192.4 million in revenue is being forecasted for the fourth quarter related to COVID-19.

Estimated losses in fiscal year 2020 for six tax funds include:

  • $95.3 million sales taxes
  • $24.1 million business taxes
  • $17.3 million state sales taxes
  • $12.7 million alcohol beverage gross receipts taxes
  • $6.7 million hotel occupancy taxes
  • $6.5 million gas and fuel taxes

For the fiscal year 2021 budget, which begins July 1, 2020, the expected impact of COVID-19 on projections is a reduction of $276.1 million in revenues.

To offset the revenue losses, Cooper has proposed a 32 percent increase in the property tax rate, The Tennessee Star reported.

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Laura Baigert is a senior reporter at The Tennessee Star.







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10 Thoughts to “Nashville Has Reportedly Suffered the Steepest COVID-19 Consumer Spending Drop in the Nation”

  1. lb

    Nashville is built on “Fool’s Gold” for the most part–IMAGE IMAGE IMAGE–the ILLUSION of having VALUE. It is a nice place to Live but that is really about it overall. These LG Companies–VERY LITTLE of their $$ flows into Nashville.
    Actually it is the people who still live in Davidson who pay the Freight–esp for the OVERLY inflated “PROMOTE NASHVILLE” elitists who have “promoted Nashville” all the way to the POORHOUSE.
    We have seen this Movie before and know how it ends. We lived in ATL during it’s “IT CITY” heydays and it was fun–UNTIL the Bills came due!
    My husband is from NV and when he got a job offer here, we moved. We have seen this happening again so last year we bought a house and completely renovated it. It is 1 MILE Outside Davidson Co and it has already during this made a big difference. Our taxes are a fraction, we get the same (actually better response!) City Svcs and dont have to live among the smug, progressive liberals who spawn way too many “Karens” and PADLOCK DOGPARKS.
    MiniCooper and his little band of Tyrannically Inclined Beaureaucrats have been wrong at every turn. Now, the 32% (or thereabouts) Prop Rate? PLEASE let someone buy the house we have on the Mkt intown SOON!

  2. Beatrice Shaw

    This is the reason we have to raise taxes. Why do people think we can just react to a pandemic like this then not ALL have to chip in to make things whole. We still have issues like higher wages for teachers and free health care we have to deal with

    1. 83ragtop50

      “We still have issues like higher wages for teachers and free health care we have to deal with”

      Do we really have to deal with these items. How about cutting all government employee wages – including educators – for a start.

  3. M. Flatt

    I was under the impression that The State of Tennessee was also one of the larger employers in Nashville. Some of those other large employers are here thanks to “sweetheart deals” involving taxes, or the lack thereof. Maybe, those wonderful “partners” with Nashville could step up and help with a bailout?

    I do hope that people keep this in mind come early November, when the American people can give their “performance review” of the current leadership.

    1. Horatio Bunce

      Yes, as mentioned in the article: “Excluding government agencies, Nashville’s top employers include…”

      Headline could have read: Rockefeller Foundation/Gates study determine Nashville is America’s least essential city due to government largess

  4. Pissed Off Nashvillian

    We can always hold Nashville up as a bad example for the rest of the state.

  5. Horatio Bunce

    “….and the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation…”

    LOL, after funding creation of the Gates Plagues he reports on how well his purchased WHO/CDC destroyed your economy,just like he simulated in Event 201. All you need now is the Gates Plague vaccine, right? Thanks Bill!

  6. Ron Welch

    Are the businesses which were shutdown and the people whose jobs were lost still responsible for their property taxes? The Mayor should at the very least receive no salary while there is any restrictions being imposed on the people and their property.

  7. Mike Johnson

    How do you shut down a city following guidelines proven to be bogus and not expect something like this?

  8. rick

    All effected business should sue the mayor and then run him out of town and he can take his useless senator brother with him, what a couple of democratic morons. What a scam this whole flu virus thing has been. And the Mayor wants to raise property taxes, what a loser.