Tropical Storm Harvey Likely to Cost Tens of Billions of Dollars

The economic cost of Hurricane Harvey, which is now a tropical storm pouring rain on the Houston area, will likely be in the tens of billions, according to experts, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The Wall Street Journal examined the damage the storm has left thus far and concludes the end result will be a significant hit to the local, state, and even national economies.

“The damage will likely be much higher than most recent hurricanes have been. There are very high levels of housing density where some of the most severe flooding is taking place. Because of that you have very high expected property and vehicle damage.” Adam Kamins, a senior economist at Moody’s Analytics told The Wall Street Journal.

Kamins stressed that the storm could lead to somewhere around $30 billion and $40 billion in property damage.

Gas prices could also be impacted at state and national levels because Houston area oil refineries, which account for 10 percent of the country’s oil refining system, are offline. It is unknown when they will resume gasoline production.

More than three million people work in Houston and its surrounding area, and many of them are not working at the moment because of the storm, including hourly employees who only get paid when they work, Newsmax reports.

The storm is hovering over the area and has dumped anywhere between 20 and 40 inches of rain, which has led to massive flooding. At least three deaths have been attributed to it, with more expected to be confirmed. Texas Governor Dan Patrick is also among the thousands of people stranded in their homes because of floodwaters.

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