Cities that win Olympic bids experience neither boom nor bust in their real estate prices, but gain construction jobs as they prepare for the Games.
We do not find support for the argument of host city backers that the Olympics delivers positive economic benefits, nor of the arguments made by opponents that there is some post-Olympic bust,” says Tsur Somerville, lead author and Sauder’s Real Estate Foundation of B.C. Professor in Real Estate Finance.
The study’s co-author is Sauder PhD student Jake Wetzel, a three-time Olympian and 2008 gold medalist as a member of the eight-man rowing team during the Summer Olympics in Beijing. “Our results conclusively demonstrate that while construction employment dramatically increases in the period prior to the Games, house prices are the same as they would be in the absence of the Games,” says Somerville.
The UBC study is the first to use real estate variables to test the Games’ economic impact on host cities. Sauder School of Business researchers analyzed house prices and construction employment in the years leading up to and after the Olympics in Australian, Canadian and U.S. cities.Read the report
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