Discussion Paper

U.S. Virgin Islands' Economy Hit Hard by Irma and Maria


Abstract: In the ten months that have passed since Hurricanes Irma and Maria ravaged the Caribbean, much interest has been focused on Puerto Rico and its roughly 3.3 million American citizens, who weathered the largest blackout in U.S. history. However, far less attention has been paid to the U.S. Virgin Islands, even though St. Thomas, St. Croix, St. John, and a number of smaller islands suffered comparable devastation. This is partly attributable to their much smaller population: the U.S. Virgin Islands (?Virgin Islands?) is home to roughly 105,000 people?1/30th Puerto Rico?s population. Even so, this territory is also part of the United States and the New York Fed?s district. In this post, we examine roughly six months of economic and related data on the Virgin Islands? economy to better ascertain the extent of disruption and subsequent recovery from the devastation of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

Keywords: Maria; USVI; Virgin Islands; Irma; hurricane;

JEL Classification: R1; H84;

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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of New York

Part of Series: Liberty Street Economics

Publication Date: 2018-07-09

Number: 20180709