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PPP Round 1: Who Got the Money?

By Bram Berkowitz – May 7, 2020 at 6:00AM

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How was the money disbursed? Which states received the most? What industries got the most PPP funding?

Round one of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) kicked off on April 3 and disbursed nearly $350 billion in just two weeks. The program, part of the $2 trillion stimulus legislation, is meant to aid struggling small businesses that have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and the limits on in-person interaction that have come with it. The PPP is already in the midst of round two, but with round one in the books, let's take a look at who the money went to.

Small Business Owner

Image Source: Getty

Loan size and approval

Recent data from the Treasury Department shows that lenders issued more than 1.6 million loans collectively worth more than $342 billion as of April 16 (some data must be missing because $349 billion was lent out in total). 

Now, the program received some flak in round one for not prioritizing small businesses, but according to the data, more than 74% of PPP loans issued were in the amount of $150,000 or less. When you look at loan volume, a higher dollar amount went out in the $350,000 to $1 million range, and the $2 million to $5 million range, although that does not necessarily mean those loans weren't going to small businesses. Loans over $5 million only made up 0.27% of the total loan count.

Loan Size Approved Loans Approved Dollars Pct. of Count Pct. of Amount
$150,000 and under 1,229,893 $58.3 billion 74.0% 17.0%
>$150,000 to $350,000 224,061 $50.9 billion 13.5% 14.9%
>$350,000 to $1 million 140,197 $80.6 billion 8.4% 23.6%
>$1 million to $2 million 41,238 $57.2 billion 2.5% 16.7%
>$2 million to $5 million 21,566 $64.3 billion 1.3% 18.8%
$5 million 4,412 $30.9 billion 0.3% 9.0%

Source: Small Business Administration and Treasury Department

Geography and industry

Perhaps not a huge surprise, California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois, and Pennsylvania received the most PPP money in terms of volume. After all, these six states have the six largest populations in the U.S., as well as bustling metropolitan areas with lots of business activity.

State Approved Loans Approved Dollars
California 112,967 $33.4 billion
Texas 134,737 $28.5 billion
New York 81,075 $20.3 billion
Florida 88,997 $17.9 billion
Illinois 69,893 $16.0 billion
Pennsylvania 69,567 $15.7 billion

Source: Small Business Administration and Treasury Department

Not including U.S. provinces and islands, Alaska and Wyoming are the only states that received less than $1 billion in total PPP funding.

In terms of industry, construction has received the most assistance so far at close to $45 billion in total loan volume. That makes a certain amount of sense considering the industry has been hit hard by supply and demand disruptions, delayed projects, closed sites, and labor shortages. Some cities such as Boston even ordered a ban on city construction projects. Still, construction PPP loan volume only just edged out loans to businesses in professional, scientific, and technical services; manufacturing; and healthcare and social assistance.

Subsector Approved Loans Approved Dollars Pct. of Amount
Construction 177,905 $44.9 billion 13.1%
Professional, scientific, and technical services 208,360 $43.3 billion 12.7%
Manufacturing 108,863 $40.9 billion 12.0%
Health care and social assistance 183,542 $39.9 billion 11.7%
Accommodation and food services 161,786 $30.5 billion 8.9%
Retail trade 186,429 $29.4 billion 8.6%
Wholesale trade 65,078 $19.5 billion 5.7%
Other services (except public administration) 155,319 $17.7 billion 5.2%
Administrative and support and waste management and remediation services 72,439 $15.3 billion 4.5%
Real estate and rental and leasing 79,784 $10.7 billion 3.1%

Source: Small Business Administration and Treasury Department

What's next?

After the program ran out of money in round one, banks and other lenders still had bulging pipelines of loan requests from businesses in need of funding. As a result, Congress allocated an additional $310 billion for round two of the program. Round one of PPP received a lot of criticism for issuing loans to large businesses that may not have necessarily needed the loans, and for allegedly not servicing loans on a first-come, first-serve basis.

So, the SBA and U.S. Treasury Department have tried to fix some of the problems in round two, primarily trying to ensure that the money is going to small businesses that need it most. Some early data in round two suggests that things might be going better. Through the first $175 billion of round two, the average loan size is $79,000, down from $206,000 in round one. Many also suspect that due to the large pipelines lenders had going into round two, the full $310 billion is likely already gone. Recently, National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said on CNN that a third round of PPP might be needed, although he did not give an actual commitment or timeline for the potential funding.

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