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Washout? Hurricane Arthur could actually boost consumer spending this July 4 weekend

July 3, 2014, 3:39 PM UTC
Tropical Storm Arthur Threatens North Carolina's Outer Banks
Hurricane Arthur might spoil your July 4 plans, but it could still give the overall economy a boost.
Mark Wilson—Getty Images

Americans are expected to pump billions of dollars into their holiday celebrations this July 4 weekend, and the prospect of inclement weather brought on by party-crasher Hurricane Arthur could actually boost spending, according to NBCNews.

More than 153 million consumers could spend roughly $6.2 billion on food alone for the various barbecues and holiday parties they have planned this weekend, according to numbers released last week by the National Retail Federation. That total equates to about $68.16 per household lined up for burgers, hot dogs, potato chips and more over the three-day weekend.

As for other forms of entertainment, the NRF says there will be another roughly 132 million people, who aren’t focused solely on chowing down and will likely celebrate by attending either a community event, such as a fireworks display, or by taking in a parade.

But, what if Hurricane Arthur — recently upgraded from a tropical storm — forces revelers’ plans to change on Friday, when certain areas on the east coast could receive several inches of rain and winds up to 80 mph?

In that event, consumer spending could actually see a spike, according to NBC News, which notes that people affected by weather could opt for indoor activities, including going to the movies or shopping at the local mall. What’s more, the weather isn’t likely to affect predictions for spending in other areas, as most vacationers have likely already purchased their beach gear and stocked up on food ahead of the holiday weekend.

At least all that food can still be enjoyed indoors.