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The Quest for the Cup: Assessing the Economic Impact of the World Cup


  • Robert Baade
  • Victor Matheson


Baade R. A. and Matheson V. A. (2004) The quest for the cup: assessing the economic impact of the World Cup, Reg. Studies 38, 343-354. Hosting the World Cup, the world's second largest sporting event, is a potentially expensive affair. The co-hosts of the 2002 games, Japan and South Korea, spent a combined US$4 billion building new facilities or refurbishing old facilities in preparation for the event. An ex post analysis of the 1994 World Cup held in the US suggests that the economic impact of the event cannot justify this magnitude of expenditures and that host cities experienced cumulative losses of $5·5 to $9·3 billion as opposed to ex ante estimates of a $4 billion gain touted by event boosters. Potential hosts should consider with care whether the award of the World Cup is an honour or a burden.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert Baade & Victor Matheson, 2004. "The Quest for the Cup: Assessing the Economic Impact of the World Cup," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(4), pages 343-354.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:regstd:v:38:y:2004:i:4:p:343-354 DOI: 10.1080/03434002000213888

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alan J. Auerbach & Jagadeesh Gokhale & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1991. "Generational Accounts: A Meaningful Alternative to Deficit Accounting," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 5, pages 55-110 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Martin Feldstein, 1995. "Would Privatizing Social Security Raise Economic Welfare?," NBER Working Papers 5281, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Alan J. Auerbach & Jagadeesh Gokhale & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1994. "Generational Accounting: A Meaningful Way to Evaluate Fiscal Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 73-94, Winter.
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    More about this item


    Sports; Soccer; Football; World Cup; Stadiums; Sports; 'Soccer'; Football; Coupe du Monde Stades; Sport; Fussball; Weltmeisterschaftspokal Stadien; Deportes; Futbol; Copa del Mundo; Estadios;

    JEL classification:

    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism


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