Houston flooding could cost up to $1.9 billion, BBVA Compass economists say – It’s the costliest flooding the city has seen in 15 years, they say
HOUSTON, April 22, 2016 — The flooding in Houston earlier this week will be the costliest the city has seen in the 15 years since Tropical Storm Allison, say BBVA Compass economists, whose preliminary estimates of the economic impact are between $1.3 billion and $1.9 billion.
Several people died in the storms that landed overnight Sunday and left up to 18 inches of rainfall in some areas, flooding neighborhoods, swamping roads and stranding thousands of people. Economic activity came to a halt on Monday as schools, hospitals and businesses were shuttered and families sheltered in their homes. The economists’ estimate includes damage to roads, structures and cars, as well as the total value of lost economic activity and sales tax revenues.
“The economic impact of this week’s flooding is likely to surpass the Memorial Day flooding, which caused around $550 million in losses,” said BBVA Compass Senior Economist Boyd Nash-Stacey. “While it may pale in comparison to Tropical Storm Allison in 2001, which cost around $6.7 billion, it’s important to consider the cumulative impact of two damaging storms less than a year apart.”
BBVA Compass Chief Economist Nathaniel Karp warns that if these events become more frequent, the city will have to take bolder steps to avoid the loss of human life, contain the financial impact and remain an attractive and competitive metro area. “Houston doesn’t want to find itself in the news more for its flooding than its big personality and its economic promise,” he said.
Led by Karp, the bank’s research team analyzes the U.S. economy and Federal Reserve monetary policy. For its analyses, the economists create models and forecasts for growth, inflation, monetary policy and industries. The economic research team also follows a variety of issues that affect the Sunbelt states where BBVA Compass operates. Any statement or opinion of a BBVA Compass economist is that economist’s own statement or opinion and does not represent a statement or prediction by BBVA Compass, its parent companies or management.
About BBVA Group
BBVA Compass is a subsidiary of BBVA Compass Bancshares Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of BBVA (NYSE: BBVA) (MAD: BBVA). BBVA is a customer-centric global financial services group founded in 1857. The Group has a solid position in Spain, is the largest financial institution in Mexico and has leading franchises in South America and the Sunbelt region of the United States. Its diversified business is geared toward high-growth markets and relies on technology as a key sustainable competitive advantage. Corporate responsibility is at the core of its business model. BBVA fosters financial education and inclusion, and supports scientific research and culture. It operates with the highest integrity, a long-term vision and applies the best practices. The Group is present in the main sustainability indexes. More information about the BBVA Group can be found at bbva.com.
About BBVA Compass
BBVA Compass is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates 666 branches, including 340 in Texas, 89 in Alabama, 73 in Arizona, 61 in California, 45 in Florida, 38 in Colorado and 20 in New Mexico, and commercial and private client offices throughout the U.S. BBVA Compass ranks among the top 25 largest U.S. commercial banks based on deposit market share and ranks among the largest banks in Alabama (2nd), Texas (4th) and Arizona (4th). BBVA Compass recently earned top nods for best mobile app and best regional bank in the South & West in Money magazine’s annual list of the Best Banks in America. Additional information about BBVA Compass can be found at bbvacompass.com, by following @BBVACompassNews on Twitter or visiting newsroom.bbvacompass.com.