By the numbers golf and the US economy 1

    How much economic activity would you guess golf generates in a single year? A few billion dollars? $10 billion? $40 billion?



    Try $68.8 billion. According to the National Golf Foundation (NGF), that was the total tally for 2011, a drop of 9.4% from the $75.7 billion generated in 2005, but still impressive given the economic shocks endured in the meantime.

    You probably want to know exactly what comprises that gargantuan number. Here’s a brief overview of the segments contributing to the overall golf economy:

    By the numbers golf and the US economy 2



  • $29.852 billion – Golf course and facility operations (greens fees, membership dues, etc…)
  • $5.639 billion – Golf equipment (clubs, balls, accessories, apparel)
  • $3.9 billion – Charities
  • $2.073 billion – Golf course capital investment (course and clubhouse renovation, new course construction, etc…)
  • $2.045 billion – Media, tournaments and associations (player endorsements, ticket revenues, etc…)
  • $20.555 billion – Hospitality and tourism (air travel, lodging, food and beverage, etc…)
  • $4.745 billion – Real estate (golf course property “premiums,” etc…)
  • By the numbers golf and the US economy 3

    How does golf compare to other sports and entertainment industries when it comes to making cash registers ring? Pretty well. Check out the numbers for these select segments:



  • TV broadcasting, cable and other subscription programming: $92.4 billion

  • Movies and videos: $83.1 billion

  • Spectator sports (football, baseball, basketball, etc…): $33.1 billion

  • Other amusement and recreation (snow skiing, bowling, boating, fitness, etc…): $32.3 billion