CA Fires Won't Harm Economy in Long Term

Rebuilding will give a boost to sagging home building sector
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 24, 2007 12:15 PM CDT
A home is engulfed in flames from a wildfire in the Del Dios neighborhood of Escondido, Calif., north of San Diego, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2007. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 8 more images

(Newser) – California’s runaway wildfires are not likely to do longterm damage to the state’s economy, the Los Angeles Times reports—in fact the disaster could be a boon to some sectors. One of those is construction: In the first nine months of the year, construction jobs were down 3% from the previous year; a massive, insurance-backed rebuilding effort could revive the business. 

Says one expert, “In the odd nature of economic accounting, this will probably be a stimulus.”  In other areas, the Times predicts no lasting injury to the tourism or theme park business, and while crop damage and business losses may be substantial, they aren't likely to match the $3 billion to $4 billion caused by the 2003 fires, unless the blazes spread to more densely populated areas in the days ahead.