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Predicting the Path to Recovery from Hurricane Katrina through the Lens of Hurricane Andrew and the Rodney King Riots

  • Robert Baade

    ()

    (Department of Economics and Business, Lake Forest College)

  • Robert Baumann

    ()

    (Department of Economics, College of the Holy Cross)

  • Victor Matheson

    ()

    (Department of Economics, College of the Holy Cross)

Hurricane Katrina caused the greatest damage of any hurricane in American history. We look at the rebuilding effort in New Orleans through the lens of two other disasters that occurred in 1992: Hurricane Andrew in Miami and the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles. The rebuilding effort in New Orleans shares similarities with both events, combining the impact of a hurricane on infrastructure and private businesses, and the prospect of an uneven recovery biased against racial minorities and the economically disadvantaged. Using the experience of the King riots, our concern is that the rebuilding effort will be modest at best in poorer areas and slow to develop. There is the prospect of long lasting negative effects on income in poor neighborhoods. In wealthier areas, the pecuniary incentive for private business and citizens to rebuild is stronger, and in some cases the rebuilding effort can cause net income gains in response to a natural disaster of the scale of Hurricane Andrew. Based on these events, we recommend targeting a disproportionate amount of federal transfers towards poorer areas to stimulate growth.

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File URL: http://college.holycross.edu/RePEc/hcx/Matheson_Katrina.pdf
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Paper provided by College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0515.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hcx:wpaper:0515
Contact details of provider: Phone: (508)793-3362
Fax: (508) 793-3708
Web page: http://www.holycross.edu/departments/economics/website/
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  1. Carol T. West & David G. Lenze, 1994. "Modeling the Regional Impact of Natural Disaster and Recovery: A General Framework and an Application to Hurricane Andrew," International Regional Science Review, , vol. 17(2), pages 121-150, August.
  2. Paulo Guimaraes & Frank L. Hefner & Douglas P. Woodward, 1993. "Wealth And Income Effects Of Natural Disasters: An Econometric Analysis Of Hurricane Hugo," The Review of Regional Studies, Southern Regional Science Association, vol. 23(2), pages 97-114, Fall.
  3. Stanley Smith & Christopher McCarty, 1996. "Demographic effects of natural disasters: a case study of hurricane andrew," Demography, Springer, vol. 33(2), pages 265-275, May.
  4. Victor Matheson, 2009. "Economic Multipliers and Mega-Event Analysis," International Journal of Sport Finance, Fitness Information Technology, vol. 4(1), pages 63-70, February.
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