Economic Study Finds $11 Billion Upside to 2014 Olympic Games

By City News Service

Hosting the 2024 Summer Olympics could increase Los Angeles’ economic output by up to $11.2 billion, according to a study released Monday.

“In 1984, Los Angeles showed the world that a responsibly managed Olympic Games could add billions of dollars to the local economy and bring progress that could be felt for decades to come — and we’re ready to do that again in 2024,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said.

“This report shows that L.A. is an ideal, low-risk host for the 2024 Games, and that we have the right plan in place to make sure that a winning bid brings a lasting Olympic legacy back to our city,” he said.

The study, conducted by Beacon Economics LLC and the University of California, Riverside School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development, was commissioned by the LA 2024 Bid Committee.

The rosy economic prediction comes after the bid committee in December released a proposed budget for the Olympics that was balanced, with projected costs and revenue coming to $5.3 billion.

No new permanent venues would need to be built, according to the panel, which intends to  make use of existing sports complexes, as well as some planned by private investors.

The study notes that approach as part of its projection, saying it brings the cost of the Games down significantly.

“There is little doubt that hosting the Olympics is an enormous boost for a local economy — both in the short term as driven by activity surrounding the events themselves, and in the long term given how these events raise the global profile of the region,” said Christopher Thornberg, founding partner of

Beacon Economics and director of the UC Riverside School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development.

“The worry is always that these benefits come at too high a cost. But because Los Angeles already has many of the assets needed for a successful Olympic experience, the upside is far greater than it would be for many other cities who would be hosting for the first time,” he said.

The study also projects the Olympics could produce up to $18.3 billion in gross economic output for the United States as a whole, as well as create up to 79,307 full-time jobs and $167 million in additional tax revenue for the state.

LA 2024 is competing with bid committees in Paris and Budapest, Hungary, to bring the Olympics to Los Angeles in 2024. The winning city will be announced in September.

The Beacon study was required by the International Olympic Committee’s candidature process and will be submitted with LA 2024’s bid book, which is due to the IOC on Feb. 3.

“LA 2024’s fiscally responsible approach has reduced risk for the city of Los Angeles and the IOC,” said LA 2024 Chairman Casey Wasserman. “Now, in addition to reducing downside, we are able to quantify some really exciting upsides from LA 2024, with $11 billion in economic activity and a new Olympic job sector equivalent in size to LA’s arts and recreation industries combined.

“And that’s just short-term spending through 2024,” he said. “It doesn’t count the incredible promotional value of bringing the Games to our city. With LA 2024, we are seizing the opportunity to put forward a plan that will serve our city, our communities and the Olympic movement long after the 2024 Games are over.”

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January 13, 2017  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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