Caitlin Clark’s economic impact boosts Iowa’s economy by up to $52.3 million

Caitlin Clark’s economic impact boosts Iowa’s economy by up to $52.3 million

Caitlin Clark’s economic impact, known as “Clarkonomics,” was recently quantified, revealing that she added up to $52.3 million to the state’s economy. The study was conducted by the Common Sense Institute (CSI) Iowa, a nonpartisan research organization focused on promoting Iowa’s economy. CSI Board member Amber Mason Lusson praised Clark for her significant impact on women’s sports and for boosting marketing efforts for the university and state.

The majority of Clark’s monetary impact comes from increased attendance at Iowa women’s basketball home games, contributing between $14.4 million and $52.3 million to the state’s economy. Attendance at home conference games during the 2023-24 season was nearly three times higher than before Clark arrived in Iowa City. This season, approximately 15% of fans traveled from out of state, a noticeable increase from previous years.

All 14 of Iowa women’s basketball home games were sellouts this season, with a notable outdoor exhibition game against DePaul at Kinnick Stadium setting an attendance record of 55,646 – the highest for an NCAA women’s basketball game. The economic impact of Clark’s contributions could potentially fund the purchase of thousands of acres of Iowa farmland or cover the tuition costs of thousands of University of Iowa students.

In terms of consumer spending, Clark generated an increase of about $82.5 million in the state, nearly doubling the revenue from the 2021 Iowa State Fair. This study highlights the significant economic impact that a star athlete like Caitlin Clark can have on a university, state, and local economy.

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