Finance expert discusses far-reaching ripple effects from Hurricane Ian
WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - While the nation’s focus is on Florida and efforts to help millions directly impacted by Hurricane Ian, the effects aren’t confined within the storm’s path. Florida is a large contributor to the U.S. economy. The Sunshine State has the fourth highest domestic gross domestic product (GDP) in the U.S. and in that category, ranks 16th in the world. With a powerful force of nature like Hurricane Ian, the effects could be felt across the country.
In Wichita, Friends University Finance Professor Jim Long is studying Ian’s effects on the economy and the supply chain. One likely impact is a jump in orange juice prices.
“We think of Florida, we think of citrus trees. Certainly, the winds will knock down the oranges. Prices will spike,” Long said.
Florida’s economy is diverse with the hurricane also potentially impacting prices on an array of items from lumber to electronics. It could also potentially impact airplane manufacturers.
“It slows down everything downstream through these companies to the people they supply, as well,” Long said.
He estimates Ian could affect prices across the country for about nine weeks. It’s not so easy as just flipping a switch.
“It’s almost being like in a traffic jam at that point. You sit for a certain amount of time, in this case nine weeks, cars start moving (but) you don’t start moving. It depends on how far back you are in the chain,” Long explained.
Industry experts don’t predict much of a change with gas prices, as Florida is not a large oil production state like Louisiana or Texas, both out of Ian’s way.
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