Economic effects of snow and cold

22 December 2009

Snow and cold have caused havoc in Europe, just before Christmas. I wonder what are their economic effects, especially on consumer spending. It may be that people have been forced to spend extra money than planned, because they are stuck somewhere. Individual misery, like individual imprudence, may be good for the wider economy. Or is it bad news? People stayed at home rather than going out shopping, and therefore didn’t spend much money. More money spent on heating means less money to spend on other things. Or, being stuck at home isn’t particularly a problem, as there are so many ways to spend money on-line?