It's safe to say that sports fans in the United States (and Canada) have learned more about lockouts during the past two years than they ever wanted to know.

Two of the four major sporting leagues have succumbed to lockouts since 2011, with both the NBA and the NHL cutting a season short because of the inability to work out a deal.

The work stoppages have been a drain for the teams, fans and the media, but what about local economies?

Business Insider recently combed through the exhaustive review of the NBA lockout published by The Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the findings are quite interesting.

The NBA lockout resulted in the cancellation of 16 games per team, but the study found that even if the entire season had been scrapped, it likely would have had little affect on the economy of NBA cities. The authors cite a 2000 study by Dennis Coates and Brad R. Humphreys that suggests that work stoppages in professional football and baseball had little economic impact on the city itself.

Sometimes the cities even benefitted from the lockout.

The reasoning is twofold. Without the option of sporting entertainment, fans tend to spend money elsewhere in the city. The city itself also saves the cost of having to provide security for the sporting events.

Somehow we don't think this will provide much solace to hockey-starved fans, although if you are looking for a silver lining to the NHL lockout, this is it.

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