The Weather Stimulus.

Higher temps could heat up the economy

An unseasonably warm winter is creating an unexpected economic boon. Roadwork has gone uninterrupted in 80% of the country, as have large-scale construction projects. In all, 17,000 nonresidential construction workers found jobs in December, when hiring is normally weak. Landscaping companies are also busier than usual. What's more, cash-strapped cities are benefiting. Des Moines, Iowa, for example, has saved about $1 million because its snowplows and salt trucks aren't out in the streets.

While it's not exactly a free lunch--share prices of publicly traded Vail Resorts have fallen--it's true that far more companies benefit from warm weather than the other way...

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