The CDC estimated excessive drinking cost society nearly $224 billion in 2006, the most recent year for which all necessary statistics were available. That worked out to about $1.90 per drink, 80 cents of which was spent by federal, state or local governments, the researchers estimated. The rest came from drinkers, their families, private health insurers, employers, crime victims and others.
Most of that was related to binge drinking, in which four or five alcoholic beverages are consumed on one occasion.
“Binge drinking results in binge spending,” said CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden.