Washing Machine and Power Drill Sales Suffered During World Cup, Journal Reports

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
July 31 2014 2:20 PM

Washing Machine and Power Drill Sales Suffered During World Cup, Wall Street Journal Reports

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Mario Goetze of Germany celebrates his World Cup–winning goal against Argentina.

Photo by Sergio Moraes/Reuters

An update, via the Wall Street Journal, about the World Cup's impact on the laundry and buzz saw sectors:

Whirlpool Corp. said demand for appliances in Latin America, originally forecast not to grow, could fall as much as 3% this year because people bought items such as video recorders instead of washing machines. Stanley Black & Decker Inc. said it sold fewer power drills and buzz saws in the region because the "World Cup became a huge market distraction."
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I kid, I kid. The Journal's piece is actually a broad look at the Cup's economic effects, and it has a politically relevant takeaway: The mega–sporting event, despite all the attention it attracted, was not necessarily a net economic positive, because other activity slowed down while everyone watched the games. Or avoided them—"American Airlines Group Inc. said fewer business travelers bothered to trek to Latin America" during the World Cup period, the Journal writes. For all the massiveness of Brazil's Cup preparations, the country's GDP is not expected to increase significantly this year:

Brazil's economy as a whole didn't see much benefit from the World Cup, said Daniela Ordonez, an economist at trade-related credit-insurance firm Euler Hermès. She estimated the value of goods and services produced in Brazil this year will grow just an extra 0.2%. Worse, the country's inflation rate is expected to rise 0.5 percentage point because of the extra spending.
"All the activity in consumption and tourism was more or less offset by reduced productivity in other areas like construction and transportation," she said. "From an economic point of view, maybe it was not worth it."

Brazil's president, Dilma Rousseff, has lost what was until recently a clear lead in polls ahead of the country's October elections.

Ben Mathis-Lilley edits the Slatest. Follow @Slatest on Twitter.

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