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Tsunami an economic disaster? Not necessarily

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By Howard Dicus - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The natural disaster of a tsunami could actually provide a temporary boost to the global economy.

Larry Summers, former director of President Obama's economic council and a former head of the World Bank, said rebuilding could temporarily boost the Japanese economy.

Summers suggested this in an interview Friday on CNBC. He added that the global economy is more resilient than most people think.

In Hawaii, disruptive weather events are good for some businesses but bad for others.

Stores that sell generators and hardware supplies experience a run on these items when a tsunami or bad weather approach; other retailers find their usual sales interrupted as people focus on evacuating and stockpiling essential supplies instead of their usual shopping.

HawaiiNewsNow correspondent Tannya Joaquin found three gas stations that had run out of fuel more than an hour before the first harbor wave was to have arrived.

The tsunami is an expense item for hotels, which have extensive plans in place to take care of guests' needs, usually through "vertical evacuation," escorting guests at least three stories up. Much of the expense comes from bringing in extra people to take care of guests.

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