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Padding Required: Assessing the Economic Impact of the Super Bowl

  • Victor Matheson


    (Department of Economics, College of the Holy Cross)

  • Robert Baade


    (Department of Economics and Business, Lake Forest College)

Civic boosters generally have estimated the Super Bowl to have an impact of $300 to $400 million on a host city’s economy. The National Football League has used the promise of an economic windfall to convince skeptical cities that investments in new stadiums for their teams in exchange for the right to host the event makes economic sense. Evidence from host cities from 1970-2001 indicates the Super Bowl contributes approximately one-quarter of what the boosters have promised and that the game could not have contributed by any reasonable standard of statistical significance, more than $300 million to host economies.

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File Function: Revised version, 2004
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Paper provided by College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0403.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in European Sports Management Quarterly, Vol. 6:4, December 2006, pp. 353-374.
Handle: RePEc:hcx:wpaper:0403
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  1. John Siegfried & Andrew Zimbalist, 2002. "A Note on the Local Economic Impact of Sports Expenditures," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 3(4), pages 361-366, November.
  2. Dennis Coates & Brad R. Humphreys, 2002. "The Economic Impact of Postseason Play in Professional Sports," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 3(3), pages 291-299, August.
  3. Robert Baade & Victor Matheson, 1999. "An assessment of the economic impact of the american football championship, the Superbowl, on host communities," IASE Conference Papers 9903, International Association of Sports Economists.
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