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Irene: counting the cost

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Irene: counting the cost


The indications are that the impact of Hurricane Irene in the US is not as bad as feared. Experts now predict the cost will not top six billion dollars – that is around four billion euros – a lot less than expected.

While at least 40 people died in the storm, experts are warning that while the cost for insurers will be less than feared. However, it is the government that is likely to suffer:

“The Federal government is the one that will be most impacted by this hurricane. The reason for that is that most of the damage is due to flood losses, and flood is covered by the National Flood Insurance Programme.” said an analyst from the University of Pennsylvania.

State and local governments face rebuilding roads, bridges and other infrastructure at a time when funds are already scarce.

But analysts say while Irene was an unpleasant and unwelcome storm, long term it will only take a small bite out of the economy.

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