According to a survey conducted in the United States by the National Association for Business Economics, teleworking could continue after the pandemic.

The survey, conducted from July 2 to 14, focused on the business climate in their company or industry. It reflects the second quarter results and the near term outlook. (Photo VALERY HACHE / AFP)

AFP

A large majority of companies in the United States expect to maintain teleworking at least in part once the health crisis is over, according to a survey by an economic organization released on Monday.

“Two in three respondents” strongly agree “or” agree “that their company’s experience with the Covid-19 pandemic will lead to more flexible hiring and working arrangements in the future in their business ”, underlines the National Association for Business Economics (NABE) in its quarterly report.

More than 80% of respondents indicated that their company will maintain “some degree” of telework after the crisis.

The survey, conducted from July 2 to 14, focused on the business climate in their company or industry. It reflects the second quarter results and the near term outlook.

“The results of the NABE survey (…) show continuous changes in the business climate but with marked improvements in most indicators compared to the survey carried out in April”, summarized the president of NABE, Constance Hunter. .

With regard to their activity, one in three companies has resumed normal activities. But almost as many companies say they don’t expect their normal operations to continue for more than six months.

“Historically low” margins

The finance, insurance and real estate sector is the one in which the largest number of companies have resumed normal activity (42%), followed by the service sector (35%). But 29% believe that this return to normal will not exceed six months, against 16% in April.

The investigation was conducted amid the resurgence of the Covid-19 pandemic in the United States. In the south and west of the country, cities and states have had to resolve to take measures to contain the coronavirus, slowing the economic recovery.

On the employment front, since March, companies have mainly adopted three special measures to counter the financial impact of the health crisis: hiring freeze (cited by 49% of companies surveyed), layoffs (34%) and unpaid leave (34%).

In addition, almost 20% of companies said they cut wages in the second quarter of 2020, down from zero in the last quarter of last year. Going forward, 82% of those polled expect wages to remain unchanged.

Finally, corporate profit margins improved in the second quarter, but they remain at a “historically” low level.

(AFP/NXP)