Business Report: Business struggles, Johnson & Johnson vaccine, riot fallout

Continuing fallout in corporate America from last week’s riot in Washington

Members of New Jersey’s business community aired their grievances with COVID-19-related restrictions Monday at an event billed as the “State of NJ Business.” With revenues plummeting, small-business owners said they’ve had to dip into personal savings to keep their companies going and they are worried about getting through the next few months. Speakers at the New Jersey Business & Industry Association forum said the state should provide more grants and extend the program that allows businesses to buy personal protective equipment at a discount. Other business owners said they should be given priority for COVID-19 vaccines.

New Brunswick-based Johnson & Johnson is on track to seek approval for its one-dose COVID-19 vaccine early next month. The vaccine is currently in late-stage trials, with important safety data coming by the end of the month. Johnson & Johnson has set a goal of providing 1 billion doses this year. The company believes it will be easier to transport and distribute its COVID-19 vaccine candidate because it won’t need to be shipped at special temperatures.

The fallout from last week’s riot in Washington continues to reverberate through corporate America. A growing list of big businesses say they are pausing their political donations. Social media platform Parler went offline after Amazon said it would no longer serve as its web host because posts on the Parler site encouraged violence. Another platform, Twitter has permanently suspended President Donald Trump’s account. And the PGA of America is cutting ties with the president; it has decided not to hold next year’s PGA championship at Trump’s Bedminster golf course.