Economic professor weighs in on tax-free weekend’s impact to Mass. economy

Economic professor weighs in on tax-free weekend's impact to Mass. economy
Published: Aug. 12, 2022 at 9:50 PM EDT
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NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -It’s the much anticipated tax-free holiday this weekend in the Bay State. Many people are planning to save money on big-ticket items. But, what kind of economic impact does this have?

Many shoppers this weekend won’t have to pay sales tax on things like computers or a couch: items under $2,500. But how is the state being impacted?

“We’re choosing a sofa. Picking everything out now. And we’ll pay for it tomorrow to take advantage of tax-free weekend,” said customer Joan Coryat.

Coryat and her husband went came to fly by night in Northampton to pick out the final design on a sofa they will purchase this weekend for tax-free savings. However, they may be saving money. But they may not be sitting on that comfy sofa anytime soon.

“The biggest thing is we have to wait like 10 months for this sofa,” said Coryat.

Supply chain delays have become the norm ever since the pandemic started. So long waits for deliveries are not new, but are things getting better? We asked economics professor at American International College John Rogers to weigh in.

“Things are a lot better this year than they were last year. in terms of availability. I think it will work out this year,” said Rogers.

But not everything is tax-free.

Sales tax will still be charged on certain things: including alcohol, vehicles, motor boats, cannabis, restaurant meals, and single items over $2,500.

We asked Rogers how much money the state will lose this weekend.

“In the process, the state is going to lose something like $20 million. Which in the grand scheme of things, on a tax revenue, something like $40 billion, what’s that? one-half or one-tenth of one percent,” said Rogers.

But, for customers like tina stevens, the state taking a potential $20-million hit this weekend, is making her look for a new iPad at yes computers.

“I think that I’ve been thinking of getting new products. I think it was the extra incentive to actually get myself here today,” said customer Tina Stevens.

We found many people Friday were pre-ordering things like iPads and laptops. They’ll pay for them Saturday or Sunday, tax-free.