Results of a Firm Survey after the Spread of COVID-19 in Japan

Author Name UESUGI Iichiro (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / ONO Arito (Chuo University) / HONDA Tomohito (University of Tokyo) / ARAKI Shota (Fellow (Policy Economist), RIETI) / UCHIDA Hirofumi (Kobe University) / ONOZUKA Yuki (Otaru University of Commerce) / KAWAGUCHI Daiji (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / TSURUTA Daisuke (Nihon University) / FUKANUMA Hikaru (Japan Finance Corporation) / HOSONO Kaoru (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / MIYAKAWA Daisuke (Hitotsubashi University) / YASUDA Yukihiro (Hitotsubashi University) / YAMORI Nobuyoshi (Faculty Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. June 2021 21-J-029
Research Project Study Group on Corporate Finance and Firm Dynamics
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This paper reports results of a survey on firms, most of which are SMEs, under the spread of COVIDovid-19 in Japan. The survey was implemented by RIETI in November 2020 and about 5,000 corporations responded. The survey questionnaire covers the following issues: types of shocks to and responses by firms, firm behaviors following the onset of the COVID-19 crisis including real activities (working from home, capital investment, transaction relationships with customers, suppliers, and banks, and business inheritance) and financial activities (new loans, debt restructuring, cash holdings, and commitment lines); use of financial assistance measures provided by the government; use of business continuity plans; and the impact of subjective uncertainty on firm performance. This paper also focuses on the subject firms that responded to the three RIETI surveys implemented in the years 2008, 2009, and 2014, and compares the current COVID-19 crisis with the Global Financial Crisis in several respects, including the impacts of crises on firm management, access to new loans, renegotiations of contract terms for existing loans, and use of financial assistance measures by the government.