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Estimating the Direct Economic Damages of the Earthquake in Haiti

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  • Eduardo Cavallo
  • Andrew Powell
  • Oscar Becerra

Abstract

This article makes an initial assessment of the monetary damages caused by the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Damages are estimated for a disaster with both 200,000 and 250,000 total dead and missing, using Haiti's economic and demographic data. The base estimate is US$8.1bn, but for several reasons this may be a lower-bound estimate. While the results are subject to many caveats, including possibly high forecast error, the implications of such an estimate are significant. Raising such a figure will require many donors. Hence excellent coordination of funding and execution will be key to ensuring the efficient use of funds. Copyright © The Author(s). Journal compilation © Royal Economic Society 2010.

Suggested Citation

  • Eduardo Cavallo & Andrew Powell & Oscar Becerra, 2010. "Estimating the Direct Economic Damages of the Earthquake in Haiti," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(546), pages 298-312, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:120:y:2010:i:546:p:f298-f312
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Matteo Bobba & Andrew Powell, 2006. "Multilateral Intermediation of Foreign Aid: What is the Trade-Off for Donor Countries?," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 1602, Inter-American Development Bank.
    2. Nicole Cornell Sadowski & Daniel Sutter, 2005. "Hurricane Fatalities and Hurricane Damages: Are Safer Hurricanes More Damaging?," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 72(2), pages 422-432, October.
    3. Matthew E. Kahn, 2005. "The Death Toll from Natural Disasters: The Role of Income, Geography, and Institutions," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 271-284, May.
    4. Toya, Hideki & Skidmore, Mark, 2007. "Economic development and the impacts of natural disasters," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 20-25, January.
    5. Matteo Bobba & Andrew Powell, 2006. "Multilateral Intermediation of Foreign Aid: What is the Trade-Off for Donor Countries?," Research Department Publications 4500, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    6. Kellenberg, Derek K. & Mobarak, Ahmed Mushfiq, 2008. "Does rising income increase or decrease damage risk from natural disasters?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 788-802, May.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations
    • O54 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Latin America; Caribbean
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • F35 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Aid

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