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The Economic Impacts of the September 11 Terrorist Attacks: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis


  • Rose Adam Z.

    () (University of Southern California)

  • Oladosu Gbadebo

    () (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

  • Lee Bumsoo

    () (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

  • Asay Garrett Beeler

    () (University of Southern California)


This paper develops a bottom-up approach that focuses on behavioral responses in estimating the total economic impacts of the September 11, 2001, World Trade Center (WTC) attacks. The estimation includes several new features. First, is the collection of data on the relocation of firms displaced by the attack, the major source of resilience in muting the direct impacts of the event. Second, is a new estimate of the major source of impacts off-site -- the ensuing decline of air travel and related tourism in the U.S. due to the social amplification of the fear of terrorism. Third, the estimation is performed for the first time using Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) analysis, including a new approach to reflecting the direct effects of external shocks. This modeling framework has many advantages in this application, such as the ability to include behavioral responses of individual businesses and households, to incorporate features of inherent and adaptive resilience at the level of the individual decision maker and the market, and to gauge quantity and price interaction effects across sectors of the regional and national economies. We find that the total business interruption losses from the WTC attacks on the U.S. economy were only slightly over $100 billion, or less than 1.0% of Gross Domestic Product. The impacts were only a loss of $14 billion of Gross Regional Product for the New York Metropolitan Area.

Suggested Citation

  • Rose Adam Z. & Oladosu Gbadebo & Lee Bumsoo & Asay Garrett Beeler, 2009. "The Economic Impacts of the September 11 Terrorist Attacks: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis," Peace Economics, Peace Science, and Public Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 15(2), pages 1-31, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:pepspp:v:15:y:2009:i:2:n:4

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Adam Rose & Shu‐Yi Liao, 2005. "Modeling Regional Economic Resilience to Disasters: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis of Water Service Disruptions," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(1), pages 75-112, February.
    2. Edward J. Balistreri & Christine A. McDaniel & Eina Vivian Wong, 2003. "An Estimation of U.S. Industry-Level Capital-Labor Substitution," Computational Economics 0303001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Johansen, Soren, 1995. "Likelihood-Based Inference in Cointegrated Vector Autoregressive Models," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198774501.
    4. Ito, Harumi & Lee, Darin, 2005. "Assessing the impact of the September 11 terrorist attacks on U.S. airline demand," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 75-95.
    5. Kemfert, Claudia, 1998. "Estimated substitution elasticities of a nested CES production function approach for Germany," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 249-264, June.
    6. Balistreri, Edward J. & McDaniel, Christine A. & Wong, Eina Vivian, 2003. "An estimation of US industry-level capital-labor substitution elasticities: support for Cobb-Douglas," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 343-356, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Adam Rose & Misak Avetisyan & Heather Rosoff & William J. Burns & Paul Slovic & Oswin Chan, 2017. "The Role of Behavioral Responses in the Total Economic Consequences of Terrorist Attacks on U.S. Air Travel Targets," Risk Analysis, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 37(7), pages 1403-1418, July.
    2. Aaron B. Gertz & James B. Davies & Samantha L. Black, 2019. "A CGE Framework for Modeling the Economics of Flooding and Recovery in a Major Urban Area," Risk Analysis, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 39(6), pages 1314-1341, June.
    3. Zio, Enrico, 2016. "Challenges in the vulnerability and risk analysis of critical infrastructures," Reliability Engineering and System Safety, Elsevier, vol. 152(C), pages 137-150.
    4. Chen, Zhenhua & Rose, Adam Z. & Prager, Fynnwin & Chatterjee, Samrat, 2017. "Economic consequences of aviation system disruptions: A reduced-form computable general equilibrium analysis," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 207-226.
    5. Dormady, Noah & Roa-Henriquez, Alfredo & Rose, Adam, 2019. "Economic resilience of the firm: A production theory approach," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 208(C), pages 446-460.
    6. José Pedro Pontes & Armando J. Garcia Pires, 2020. "(De) industrialization in the Von Thünen’s economy," Working Papers REM 2020/0141, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, REM, Universidade de Lisboa.

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