The Centre for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) reports that the US business-to-business (B2B) exhibitions industry improved significantly in the second quarter of 2021. In comparison to the previous four quarters, cancellation rates of physical events had dropped to 66.5% from 90.4% in the first quarter 2021 CEIR reports.
The 2021 CEIR Index Report attempts to analyse the 2020 exhibition industry performance and provides an economic and exhibition industry outlook for the next three years.
As a result of fewer cancellations, the CEIR Total Index, a measure of exhibition industry performance, showed significant improvement. The performance of the US economy was far better, registering a moderate 2% increase in real (inflation-adjusted) GDP from Q2 2019. It increased at an annual rate of 6.6% from the previous quarter. A sharp rebound in the third quarter of 2020 and a continued recovery through the second quarter of 2021 were also noted by the report.
Excluding cancelled events, the Total Index for completed events in Q2 2021 dropped by 37.6% from 2019, compared to a decline of 54.5% from 2019 in Q1 2021. All exhibition metrics for completed events in Q2 improved from Q1 even though all metrics still posted sharp declines from 2019.
Delta variant of infections of Covid-19 have dampened economic activities during the third quarter of 2021, however, although Johns Hopkins’ Covid-19 data shows that the seven-day moving average of new cases appears to have passed the recent peak. Earlier this month US President Joe Biden imposed stringent new vaccine rules on federal workers, health care staff and large employers with 100 or more employees. The new requirements could apply to up to two-thirds of the American workforce. Furthermore, many large gathering venues require proof of vaccinations or negative Covid-19 tests.
Dr Allen Shaw, chief economist for global economic consulting associates at CEIR, said: “Because of those new initiatives, economic activities should continue at a robust pace with real GDP growth at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of over 5% during the second half of the year, and the B2B exhibition cancellation rate should decline further.”
Click here for information for the 2021 CEIR Index Report.