IRENE Damage Estimates Range From $7 Billion To $20 Billion


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Without including money lost to shutdowns, evacuations, and general disorder, hurricane Irene has left an estimated $7 billion to $13 billion in damages over 10 East Coast states.According to ABC News, the Consumer Federation of America says wind damage may total about $5 billion and flooding $2 billion.

That’s the low end. Peter Morici of the University of Maryland says $20 billion in damage and economic losses is possible in the weeks to come.

“The East Coast has a lot in common with New Orleans,” Morici told ABC. “There are a lot of low lying areas, the flood levels are almost breaking records.”

The damage is still less than it could have been. Tudor’s gave a 35 per cent chance Saturday that total damages would be at $40 billion.

In fact, Cumberland Advisors Chairman David Kotok says it could be a stimulus (via Politico): “We are now upping our estimate of fourth-quarter GDP in the U.S. economy. Billions will be spent on rebuilding and recovery. That will put some people back to work, at least temporarily.”

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has not yet released any federal damage estimates.