Questions and answers about
the UK economy.

Analysis of websites regarding firms’ reactions to corona pandemic in Germany

We analyze websites of about 1.3 Mio. firms in Germany twice a week searching for the term Corona and synonyms of it. Since our first collection of data on March 19th, 2020, the share of firms mentioning the pandemic raised by two percentage points within a week (from 10% to 12% on March 27th). Linking the information from the websites with information from firm databases, we find substantial differences with regard to sector, age and size of the firms. Older and, in particular, larger firms report more often on the pandemic. It will be analyzed to what extent this is effect is driven by dedicated/larger web-teams resulting in more frequent updates of the website. We find substantial variation of levels and changes at the district level. The share of firms mentioning the pandemic on their website increases from East to West, and the growth is largest in the Southwest. We find higher levels in urban areas. We are analyzing to what extent these regional patterns might be attributed to structural differences in the firm population. A first application of computer-based text analyses indicates that the identified instances of Corona and synonyms on the websites correspond with different topics. The relative relevance of these topics varies across sectors.

Lead investigator:

Peter Winker

Affiliation:

Justus Liebig University Giessen

Primary topic:

Business, big & small

Region of data collection:

Europe

Country of data collection

Germany

Status of data collection

In Progress

Type of data being collected:

Online survey

Unit of real-time data collection

Firms

Start date

3/2020

Frequency

Periodic (other)

Read the results from this research