Shutdown Ends, Insurance Costs Assessed
The five-week partial government shutdown cost the U.S. economy about $3 billion in forgone economic activity that won’t be recovered, the Congressional Budget Office said in a new report Monday. The agency projected that an overall $11 billion in losses due to the shutdown over President Donald Trump’s border wall will be offset by a projected $8 billion boost for the GDP through the remainder of the year.
The impact on the insurance industry is still being assessed. Various industry leaders and stakeholders were gathered in New York days before the shutdown ended at the annual Property/Casualty Insurance Joint Industry Forum held by the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.). One thing participants noticed was who wasn’t there.
For example, FEMA Deputy Administrator Dan Kaniewski had been invited to speak at the event, but he wasn’t able to attend due to the shutdown. “It’s a shame that we can’t have guests like that because of this type of activity, which we all know is more political than anything else,” Sean Kevelighan III president and CEO, said.
Roy Wright, president and CEO of the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety, was the former chief executive of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). “I’ve got to tell you, as someone who’s worked in that space and led as the chief executive national flood at FEMA, so much about these kinds of things just really gets at a visceral level.”
“Those are folks, some of them are furloughed, but many of them actually are at work, and they’re working without a paycheck. That affects real families, and it just pains you to see how that plays,” Wright said. “At the end of the day, there are real services that are provided to Americans, and there’s a set of professionals that have been brought in, that are part of our insurance industry.”