The Effects of the NFL on Metro-level GDP
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Behavioral economics studies the effects of psychological, social, cognitive, and emotional factors on economic decisions of individuals . In this paper, we test for an observable relationship between the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita of a metropolitan area with the performance of the local National Football League (NFL) team. The performance of the NFL team was defined using the team’s average winning percentage in a given period and Superbowl performances and locations. We compile panel data for the 32 NFL programs and GDP per capita of 30 metropolitan areas over a 8-year period. The data was divided into periods based on the Economic Recession of 2009. We hypothesize that a team’s performance will positively impact the GDP per capita of the specified metropolitan area due to a boost in local morale reflected through increased consumption. Our results indicate that there is no observable relationship between the performance of a NFL team and the GDP per capita of the metropolitan area that hosts the team.