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Empirical Economics

, Volume 56, Issue 5, pp 1647–1681 | Cite as

Macroeconomic impacts of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti

  • Rohan BestEmail author
  • Paul J. Burke
Article

Abstract

In this paper, we use the synthetic control method to estimate the macroeconomic losses from the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, one of the most severe natural disasters in the modern era. The macroeconomic effects of the earthquake were equal to an average loss of up to 12% of gross domestic product over the period 2010–2015. While surges in imports and foreign aid supported a temporary increase in aggregate consumption, aggregate investment and services sector output experienced large contractions. The road transport sector was severely affected. Impacts on electricity use have been less pronounced. The data suggest that macroeconomic losses may be permanent. The earthquake is thus a case of an extreme natural disaster contributing to divergence in development outcomes.

Keywords

Macroeconomic impact Haiti Earthquake Synthetic control method 

JEL Classification

E21 E22 E23 O11 O54 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We are grateful for comments from Terence Wood, David Stern, Yusaku Horiuchi, Sadia Afrin, Ryan Edwards, Huy Nguyen, anonymous referees, and participants in the Arndt-Corden Department of Economics Seminars. This research was also supported by an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Data and computer code availability

The datasets of this paper (1. data, 2. code including instructions) are collected in the electronic supplementary material of this article.

Supplementary material

181_2017_1405_MOESM1_ESM.zip (3.1 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (zip 3202 KB)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia

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