Yes the signs of a slowdown are apparent and yes the indicators have shown up, but does that mean we should change our plans or just adjust our expectations? Nationally, pundits will scramble to either send a message of doom and gloom, or moderate realism. The truth lies in your own backyard and how your surrounding business leaders and economy treat the resulting economic climate. There’s a clear fervor in Tampa Bay and a heightened sense of confidence, so what if we just pushed on through and didn’t pay attention to any doubters or naysayers? What would happen?
It’s not going to make us fall harder than we fell 10 years ago! We’ve set a new base and I challenge the business leaders in our region to push higher because the benefits in the next recovery will only be multiplied by a larger growth quotient, and the negatives will just be delayed but they won’t be exaggerated.
Jobs reports came in less than expected (click to read one view) but consumer confidence in May posted another increase and is back at levels seen last Fall, whereby the near term economic sentiment looks towards growth at a solid pace. Consumers seem to feel strong enough that spending should not have a significant pull back in the coming summer months. Another positive is that although the jobs report came out much less than expected, the Employment Trends Index increased in May and shows signs that any slowdown will be a modest one and could even continue to tighten the labor market. The thoughts of a trade war, immigration and workforce automation all come into play at this juncture of a low unemployment rate, and how those topics are being “baked” into the results. Will they help or hinder, and how long until those shoes drop?
We are in the longest expansion in US history and that being said I think we can all read the tea leaves even if you’re not a Vegas regular who watches the roulette table hit black all night long, while you bet on red.
What does that all mean? Nothing...nothing at all because in Tampa we’re seeing major structural changes to our economy and a way of life that can not be reversed in a short matter of time. Population growth, added economic drivers, new developments in our urban core, improved regionalism with surrounding county leaders, growing airport and seaport capacity, innovation in tech and entrepreneurship at the college/university level, new regulatory structures around the solar industry and medical cannabis/hemp creating jobs, a change in how consumer goods are shipped and a resulting growth in jobs for those sectors as well as professional and tech jobs. Oh…and we’re still a pretty decent tourist and retiree destination.
Do you really think a slowdown will derail any or all of that?
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