Economics of the Super Bowl

Victor A. Matheson

in The Oxford Handbook of Sports Economics

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780195387773
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Economics of the Super Bowl


This chapter highlights a time series of comparative advertising revenue and ticket prices in secondary markets for the preeminent event in American sports: the National Football League (NFL)'s Super Bowl. The NFL itself has examined the effect of the Super Bowl on taxable sales. It is often claimed that the Super Bowl brings indirect or non-pecuniary benefits to host cities which add substantially to the direct monetary benefits. The game also brings potential intangible benefits to the host city. Ex post economic analyses of the Super Bowl by scholars not financially connected with the game have typically found that the observed effects of the game on real economic variables such as employment, government revenues, taxable sales, GDP, and personal income, although generally positive, are a fraction of those claimed by the league and sports boosters.

Keywords: Super Bowl; National Football League; economics; advertising revenue; ticket prices; secondary markets; employment; government revenues; taxable sales; personal income

Article.  6576 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Industry Studies ; Public Economics

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