How Barbie, Beyoncé and Taylor Swift are affecting economics

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It has been the summer of the woman, economically speaking. Taylor Swift and Beyoncé are expected to earn at least a billion dollars off their tours.

The “Barbie” movie is expected to become the highest-grossing movie at the 2023 domestic box office, earning more than $574.2M, more than “The Super Mario Bros Movie.” 

Experts are looking at how Barbie, Beyoncé and Taylor Swift are affecting economics.

We talked about this with Susan Tang, Ph. D., a professor at ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business.

The boost to local economies cannot be overstated. The beauty industry is seeing it with an increase in manicures, facials and hair appointments. People are also buying costumes and merchandise.

“For Taylor Swift’s tour, if you ask me, there’s like 70,000 jobs created,” Dr. Tang said. “For Glendale, as the beginning of the tour, we attracted more than 150,000 people here. Overall, we see hotel prices are higher, we see very high hotel revenue. So food consumption, clothes and services are boosting. It’s pretty huge, especially for the local economy.”

Taylor Swift fans have been buying beads in record numbers to create friendship bracelets they trade at the concert. And Beyoncé fans are also out in full force, buying merchandise.

The summer of the woman has also seen the rise of revenge spending. That’s when consumers decide to spend their money on experiences rather than goods.

“It’s becoming more of a general trend,” Dr. Tang said. “We are valuing experiences. Many consumers are prioritizing that.”

Susan Tang, Ph. D., Professor, W. P. Carey School of Business

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