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Windfall Downfall: Politicos and Backers Promise Windfalls for Cities That Host "Mega-Events," but the Numbers Aren't There 

Thursday, Jul 3 2014
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• A study of 25 years of Major League Baseball All-Star Games found employment in host cities was lower than in comparable cities not hosting the games.

• Analyses of 30 years of NCAA Men's Final Four basketball tournaments revealed the incomes of residents in host cities were lower than in years the tournament wasn't played there.

• A study of three decades worth of Super Bowls reveals host regions are five times as likely to lose money or make no money as they are to bank the $300 million National Football League backers claim as the de facto economic impact for the event.

• Of the estimated 3.2 million fans to attend games at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, only 310,000 came from overseas. As such, 90 percent of the fans would have been in South Africa anyway, spending money in South Africa. The nation spent more than $4 billion on the tournament, including $1.3 billion on stadiums alone.

• During the Beijing Olympics in August 2008, the reported number of visitors was on par with the tally from August 2007.

• While the NFL claimed a $670 million boost in south Florida's taxable sales thanks to the 1999 Super Bowl, a subsequent independent study found an impact of just $37 million.

• Rosy assessments of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics did not include the cost of security, provided by the Department of Defense. JE

Source: Robert Baade and Victor Matheson

About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Bio:
Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.

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