OTTAWA — Statistics Canada reports nearly one-third of Canadian businesses who responded in a newly released survey they have seen their revenues plummet by 40 per cent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A further one-fifth of businesses reported a revenue drop of between 20 per cent and 40 per cent, suggesting that more than half of Canadian companies have watched earnings drop since the crisis began in March.
That has led to widespread layoffs and furloughs, with the crowd-sourced survey results from more than 12,600 companies suggesting nearly one in five businesses have laid off 80 per cent or more of their workforce.
The highest proportion of businesses reporting heavy losses and large layoffs were in the accommodation and food services sector, as well as retail.
However, 62.3 per cent of businesses that took part in the survey say they could re-open or return to normal operations less than one month after public restrictions like physical distancing measures are removed.
The results are from an online survey this month done in tandem with the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. Statistics Canada says the study cannot be applied to the overall Canadian economy because the voluntary survey does not represent a random sample of the population.