Winter Storm Jonas has paralyzed the eastern coast of the United States; more than two dozen individuals have been confirmed dead (largely due to traffic accidents and heart attacks brought on by shoveling snow), over 12,000 flights have been cancelled, and approximately 50 million people are still dealing with the adverse effects of flooding, ice, and snow. Estimates are still being floated regarding the storm's adverse financial impact; the region generates more than $16 billion a day in economic activity. As Paul Walsh, vice president of weather analytics at the Weather Co., stated, "Restaurants, hotels, tourist venues, all those businesses have basically lost a weekend. For retailers, it's more of a wash. They lost sales this weekend, but likely got some increased spending on the front-end as people prepared for the storm." Weather Co. has put out a tentative estimate of $500 million in lost revenue as a result of Jonas, other estimates have climbed to $850 million and even over $1 billion. Those estimates are likely to go up dramatically if transportation isn't restored in time for the majority of the workweek.However, because the storm hit during a weekend and power outages were rare, the overall economic impact is likely to be minimal. Theaters, restaurants, and the entertainment industries have taken the brunt of the losses, along with the transportation and postal industries. UPS
Consumers did spend significantly in preparation for Jonas, therefore a number of businesses will have seen small profits due to their customers stocking up on gasoline, food, alcohol, salt, shovels, and other blizzard-prep materials. Convenience stores that managed to remain open despite the snow profited due to having little to no competition. Consumers also shopped online freely during the worst of the storm, and after the skies clear there will presumably be a surge in spending due to home and machine repairs. Those that the storm will benefit are companies and workers that are needed for the inevitable cleanup, largely private contractors and government workers. There has also been an upticks in sales for outerwear and winter gear, such as coats, gloves, snow boots, etc. This trend is likely to continue as consumers along the East Coast realize that winter has, at long last, finally arrived. As for the persisting effects of Winter Storm Jonas, despite the losses it has inevitably caused, the US economy is unlikely to experience any long-term consequences.