Many east-coast Americans spent their weekends evacuating their homes before Hurricane Irene arrived. Businesses big and small began boarding up windows and closing operations down early last week, in attempt to save themselves from financial disaster.
The Hurricane ripped through 10 states, bringing high winds, tornadoes and floods; leaving an estimated $10 billion in damage. As so many families rushed to save themselves and their belongings, many will return this week to find most of their valuables damaged or gone.
Economic Floodwater Rising
With an already fragile economy desperately swimming to stay afloat, the added costs of the natural disaster will likely stretch our government’s budget once again. After fighting earlier this month to reach an agreement about our national budget, the White House will be put to the test to find yet another solution to our money troubles.
Many economists are suggesting the total costs for the storm could easily exceed the estimated $10-13 billion. Personal insurance claims will explode over the next few weeks as people return to their homes after the storm. Lost businesses, transportation shut downs, shipping and manufacturing delays could all leave local and regional economies shattered. Nationally, fuel prices are expected to increase as the east coast is home to nearly 10 major refineries. With a nation already drowning in debt, the storm is likely to leave a marked effect.