While I do agree that _certain_ small businesses have been hit hard, I feel like other small businesses have made out like bandits too, while others are basically unaffected. Businesses have used Covid as a reason/excuse to raise prices, cut employees (obviously the worst ones first), trim the fat, focus their efforts, etc...
One of my hobbies is that I'm a volunteer firefighter - a way to get out from behind the desk and meet other people, not to mention that I'm a bit of an adrenaline junkie. There about 30 other members, and its an eclectic bunch of people, everyone from doctors, nurses, paramedics, engineers, business managers, mechanics, plumbers, carpenters, electricians, truck drivers, retirees, etc. Not a one is hurting from this. People are investing that extra cash into their homes, their hobbies, new vehicles, recreational equipment & activities, new businesses, as well as the markets.
Locally, they are hiring like crazy - they cannot find enough workers, I'm seeing signs up, and hearing about businesses hiring dozens of people.
Yes, if you're buying real estate right now, I think that will eat up those savings. Hopefully they'll be able to afford those mortgage payments when rates go up.
And the numbers clearly show the average Canadian isn't hurting because they're banking 5x more money than usual, and that is fueling investments.
That second chart above is absolutely astounding. Inflows to stocks in the past 5 months exceed the past 12 years. Seriously, that is absolutely nuts.
What will be interesting to see is if the past year's injection into the markets will be withdrawn just as quickly and will lead to a protracted bear market. Just don't be the last one to pull out your Covid savings!