Data: JPMorgan Chase Institute; Chart: Axios Visuals

Small businesses are powerful engines of local economies, and they've been hit hard since the onset of COVID-19, according to a JPMorgan Chase Institute analysis of nearly 1.3 million de-identified small firms nationwide.

Why it matters: Cash balances provide liquidity that businesses need to get through a financial shock.

By the numbers: Overall, typical small business cash balances dropped 12.7% after the onset of COVID-19 and declined in every city and across industries.

  • During the second half of April, some balances rebounded, likely due to CARES Act stimulus payments and declines in expenses. But revenues still lagged.
  • By the end of March, the typical small firm saw revenues 50% less than the same period in 2019.

The steep drops seen in Las Vegas, Orlando and New York may be partly due to the sudden disappearance of tourists. In Atlanta, small businesses were already 10% lower than in 2019 before the national emergency declaration.

  • Small businesses in Seattle, Indianapolis, Denver, Phoenix and Chicago saw smaller-than-average cash balance declines.

There are striking disparities: Cash balances for Black-owned firms decreased by 26%, compared to 10% declines for white-owned businesses.

  • Revenues of Asian American-owned firms declined by more than 60%, possibly due to discrimination as well as the concentration in hard-hit industries such as restaurants and personal services.

Go deeper: Small businesses face post-lockdown cash crunch

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Updated Sep 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden has $141 million more on hand than Trump

Combination images of President Trump and his 2020 presidential rival Joe Biden. Photo: Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images/Alex Wong/Getty Images

Joe Biden's campaign, the Democratic National Committee and joint fundraising committees had $466 million in cash on hand, the presidential candidate's team announced late Sunday.

Why it matters: President Trump's campaign had $325 million cash on hand, his campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh announced Friday.

Graham hopes his panel will approve Amy Coney Barrett by late October

Chair Lindsey Graham during a Senate Judiciary Committee business meeting on Capitol Hill Thursday. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told Fox News Saturday he expects confirmation hearings on Judge Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court to start Oct. 12 and for his panel to approve her by Oct. 26.

Why it matters: That would mean the final confirmation vote could take place on the Senate floor before the Nov. 3 presidential election.

Texas city declares disaster after brain-eating amoeba found in water supply

Characteristics associated with a case of amebic meningoencephalitis due to Naegleria fowleri parasites. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Texas authorities have issued a warning amid concerns that the water supply in the southeast of the state may contain the brain-eating amoeba naegleria fowleri following the death of a 6-year-old boy.

Details: The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality issued a "do not use" water alert Friday for eight cities, along with the Clemens and Wayne Scott Texas Department of Criminal Justice corrections centers and the Dow Chemical plant in Freeport. This was later lifted for all places but one, Lake Jackson, which issued a disaster declaration Saturday.