CNBCs Jim Cramer said on Friday that it will close its New York restaurants soon because of the coronavirus pandemic, but hopes to resume business when the public health crisis improves.
“I’m closing my restaurants and I’m closing them in 10 days,” Cramer said “Squawk on the street.” “I’ll finish them up. If we get a vaccine I’ll open up again.”
Cramer, an owner at two Brooklyn restaurants, said he will continue to pay rent while they are down. He noted that part of the decision to close them was that it was difficult to get finances up and running, citing a 25% operating limit for indoor restaurants in the city. “At 50% you might be able to do it,” he said.
However, during the pandemic, Cramer often raised concerns about the role of restaurants and bars in facilitating human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus. “It’s just not safe to keep the restaurants and bars open. Every time they open, the virus roars back,” Cramer said on Mad Money. on September 21.
He reiterated that concern on Friday when he explained why he was going to close his restaurants. The decision was based on “the combination of the air flow problems and the fact that we don’t have a vaccine, just therapeutics,” Cramer said, probably referring to that Emergency permits for drugs like Gilead Sciences‘Remdesivir.
The gastronomy was hit by the coronavirus pandemic, especially by small and independent businesses. According to Yelp, there was as of August 31st 32,109 restaurants closed in the US, approximately 61% of them were permanent.
Cramer has repeatedly urged Congress provide solid support for restaurants and the US economy as a whole during the pandemic, These calls have intensified lately as Democratic leaders and White House officials seek to reach an agreement on additional coronavirus aid.
While Cramer sympathizes with the struggles of small business owners has confirmed He has the financial means that most do not have.
“Look, we were the last to try. There’s still a couple out there who have plenty of outdoor space,” Cramer said on Friday, referring to the expanded outdoor dining program in New York City. “But we’re not alone like this. I think about 50% of people are in the same situation.”