The Cost of a Federal Government Shutdown

December 2018 Partial Government ShutdownThe Cost of a Federal Government ShutdownThe consequences of government shutdowns, and why the current (December 2018) shutdown is similar to the one in 2013.

Article, In The News,  | Data & Documents
Dec 30, 2018  | 1 min read | Print Article

This article by Andrew Wagner first appeared in Government Matters on December 30, 2018

The partial government shutdown will continue into another week. 400,000 federal employees are furloughed, and an additional 400,000 “essential” personnel are working without pay. While the government is not paying employees, that doesn’t mean it won’t cost a lot. Steve Ellis, vice president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, says that the cost of this government shutdown could be significant; not just for federal workers, but the whole economy.

“This is a political fight. It is not necessarily really on the merits of the underlying information. OMB after the 2013 shutdown looked at how many permits didn’t get sent out, sales of aircraft [etc.]. Right now, FEMA has determined that you can’t renew or get new flood insurance… so that’s delaying home sales,” Ellis said.

“They calculated that it has a 0.2 [to] 0.6 impact in reducing quarterly GDP, which turned into about $2 to $6 billion in lower growth in fourth quarter GDP. The question is, is that really going to sway Congress or future administrations on these issues?”

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