Initial writers’ strike estimates ‘grossly inflated’ says UCLA economist

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat Kings160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! A protracted strike by Hollywood writers would have a $380 million impact on the Los Angeles economy, far less than some early estimates of $1 billion, a UCLA economist reported today. UCLA Anderson Forecast economist Jerry Nickelsburg said initial estimates of the strike’s impact were “grossly inflated.” He said the walkout would have a roughly $380 million economic impact, even if the strike were to last through the end of March — roughly as long as the 1988 WGA strike. “Virtually everywhere in the media, in City Hall and in Sacramento, this greater than $1 billion economic impact is taken as fact,” Nickelsburg said. “But what is behind it and how much faith can we put in this number? Is there a serious public issue for the Los Angeles economy worthy of governmental intervention? “As it turns out, a close examination of the economic dynamics of the 2007 WGA strike suggests a much more modest and transitory impact on the Los Angeles economy,” he said. “The impact, even if the strike runs as long as the record 1988 strike, will be about one-third or less of the currently accepted $1 billion estimate.” Representatives for the WGA and television and film producers were negotiating for a fourth consecutive day today in hopes of ending the strike, which began Nov. 5. The union is pushing for writers to be paid for work distributed via the Internet, video iPods, cellphones and other new media.last_img read more