Tag Archives: Economy

Manpower: Metro Knox hiring to improve in 2Q

Job Openings

Hiring in metropolitan Knoxville is expected to show healthy improvement in the second quarter, according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey released Tuesday.
Seventeen percent of Knoxville area employers surveyed said they planned to add jobs in the April to June period, while only 1 percent said they would trim payrolls, Manpower reported.
Construction related businesses are among a broad range of area companies expected to add jobs in the coming quarter.
“We’re seeing a lot more activity in construction. We’re seeing a lot more opportunities,” said  Bill Garibay, president and CEO of ES&H Inc., a Knoxville-based company that provides professional services in construction, remediation, environmental, and safety and health support.
An improving economy is driving increased hiring, said Garibay, who also is president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of East Tennessee.
“The economy is making a turn. The housing market is making a turn and people are starting to spend money,” he said.
Area employers were considerably more cautious about adding jobs in the first quarter when 13 percent said they would hire in January through March period, while 9 percent expected to cut staff , Manpower reported.
In addition to construction, other Knox area job sectors with the best employment opportunities include, durable goods manufacturing, nondurable goods manufacturing, transportation and utilities, wholesale and retail trade, financial activities, professional and business services, education and health services, leisure and hospitality and government, Manpower said.
Nationwide, 19 percent of employers surveyed plan to add jobs in the second quarter and 4 percent said they would cut staff.
Manpower surveyed more than 18,000 employers across the country for its second quarter report.

HGTV and DIY enjoying best year ever, Ken Lowe says

Scripps Networks Interactive headquarters

Scripps Networks HQ in West Knoxville.

HGTV and DIY Network are enjoying “probably their best year ever, totally, not only in ratings but advertising as well,”  Ken Lowe, Scripps Networks Interactive’s chairman, CEO and president, told CNBC today.
Lowe credited an improving housing market for the boosting all of the company’s lifestyle media channels.
“When you see people enjoying their homes and the housing market, feeling better and being better, then that just naturally allows our networks to flourish,” Lowe said.
Lowe was on CNBC to mark the 20th anniversary of the Food Channel.
“Who would have thought, right, a little network about how to boil water is now celebrating its 20th anniversary and over the years it’s really become a pop culture icon and started so many chefs down the path of becoming celebrities, if you will,” Lowe said.
Investors surely enjoy the company’s growth, if not the over abundance of celebrity chefs. SNI’s share price was trading around $78.45 by mid afternoon, up more than 32 percent for the year.
Scripps Networks portfolio of cable channels includes HGTV, DIY Network, Food Network, Cooking Channel, Travel Channel and Great American Country
Click here for Lowe’s CNBC interview.

Closing Smokies costs economy $23 million

Road closed in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Road closed in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

The closing of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park has cost the regional economy more than $23 million in lost visitor spending through the first 10 days of the government shutdown, according to a report released today by the Coalition of National Park Service Retirees.
In addition, more than 257,000 tourists have been unable to visit the park since it has been closed and 11,766 jobs, including 11,367 local/non-park service jobs, are at risk, CNPSR says.
Nationwide, $750 million in visitor spending has been lost at the 12 national parks studied by the coalition.
“These figures are mind boggling and they only begin to capture the full economic shock of locking up the crown jewels of America – our national parks,” CNPSR Chair Maureen Finnerty, former superintendent of Everglades and Olympic National Parks, said in a statement.”  Towns, cities, and even whole states that depend on park tourism are feeling an increasingly strong pinch. And if Congress continues to hold our national parks hostage, these communities will soon be reeling from what is in many cases the main driver of their economies.”
The coalition describes itself as a non-partisan, non-profit organization comprised of former employees of the National Park Service.
Click here for the coalition’s news release.

UT economists predict modest economic growth in 2014

University of Tennessee economists predict modest improvement in the Tennessee and national economies in 2014, according to fall 2013 Tennessee Business and Economic Outlook released Thursday.
“While growth is subdued due to reduced federal government spending and a global slowdown, the expansion has shown a much-welcomed resilience,” said Matt Murray, associate director of UT’s Center for Business and Economic Research and the report’s author.
“The outlook for 2014 is encouraging, but the economy continues to confront a number of domestic and international challenges,” Murray added.
Residential and non residential fixed investments and exports will drive growth next year, while reduced federal and state government spending “will be the primary drags on growth,” Murray said.
Unemployment will continue to fall in 2014, but a decline in labor force participation continues to be a problem, the report says.
The state’s unemployment rate, however, will average 8.2 percent for 2013, compared to 7.6 percent for the nation. Tennessee’s unemployment rate was 8 percent last year and is expected to drop to 7.6 percent in 2014 and 7 percent in 2015, according to a news release.
Other highlights from the report:
Personal income in Tennessee is expected to grow 2.6 percent this year, slightly lower than the nation’s 2.7 percent rate of growth, and improve to 4.4 percent in 2014.
Professional and business services, leisure and hospitality services, and manufacturing sectors will see marginally slower growth next year compared to this year.
Eating and drinking establishments and food stores will experience strong growth this year.
Taxable sales growth for 2013 is expected to be 3.2 percent, well behind the 4.7 percent growth rate of 2012. It will see modest improvement in 2014 to a projected 3.5 percent.
Automobile dealer sales were especially hot in 2012, up 10.1 percent, as consumers continued to satisfy their demands for vehicle upgrades. A cooling of sales will take place this year, with a rebound to 4.4 percent growth in 2014.
Click here for the full CBER report.

Export growth boosts metro Knoxville economy

1212_kclo_ipad_skyline

Exports are playing a significant role in Knoxville’s continuing economic recovery, according to a new Brookings Institution report
The value of the metro area’s exports last year totaled $4.29 billion, or 12.7 percent of the region’s total output, according to a the “Export Nation 2013” report released this week.
Motor vehicle parts and miscellaneous fabricated metal products were two largest export sectors at 10. 5 percent and 10.3 percent, respectively, of the region’s export total.
The next largest export sectors were precision instruments, financial services and management & consulting, all at slightly more than 3 percent of the region’s total.
Knoxville ranked 73rd out of the 100 largest metro areas in total value of exports. However, Knoxville’s export growth in the last three years ranked among the best in the country, according to Brookings.
Knoxville’s 11 percent export growth from 2009-2012 ranked 13th nationally.
“Exports have been a critical driver of the post-recession recovery in the U.S. and its metro areas,” said Brad McDearman, director of the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Export Initiative and co-author of the report. “Metro leaders that make boosting exports an economic development priority are better positioning their regions for success in the more globally-connected 21st century economy.”
Click here for the full Brookings report.

Report: Economy ready for strong growth in 2014

Despite cuts in government spending and payroll tax increases, the state and national economies are poised for solid growth in 2014 and 2015, a University of Tennessee report says.

Driving the growth are improved job creation, surging vehicle sales and a recovering housing market, according to the spring 2013 Tennessee Business and Economic Outlook.

“The economy has finally found a firm footing,” Matt Murray, associate director of the UT Center for Business and Economic Research and the report’s author, said in a news release “This will be the third year of payroll employment growth and a falling unemployment rate following the Great Recession.”

Nationally, payrolls are expected to grow 1.5 percent this year and 1.6 percent in 2014, the report said.

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Should the Fed keep quiet?

I encourage newsmakers to talk whenever they want to — or even when they would rather not. An informed public is a good thing, after all.

Ben Bernanke

Ben Bernanke

But Paul La Monica, assistant managing editor for CNNMoney, makes an interesting case for tell Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to clam up.

Bernanke and the Fed deserve credit for helping “save the U.S. economy from a fate that could have been much worse in 2008.”

But the markets would be better off without the Fed’s new “transparency” policy, La Monica says.

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Tenn. economy should be ‘substantially stronger’ in 2014

Tennessee’s economy will continue modest growth this year, but should be “substantially stronger”in 2014, University of Tennessee economists said today.

On the national scene, the economy is expected to grow slowly in the coming months with a steady decline in the unemployment rate, according to the annual economic forecast prepared for the governor by UT’s Center for Business and Economic Research.

“The U.S. economy is projected to continue to grow in the quarters ahead and the unemployment rate will continue its slow but steady decline,” said Matt Murray, associate director of CBER and the report’s author. “For Tennessee, the economic outlook calls for modest growth in 2013 followed by substantially stronger growth in 2014.”

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Corker says no worries about fiscal cliff

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tennessee, said today the economy won’t tumble over the fiscal cliff, despite all the gloom and doom talk coming from Washington.

Corker told CNBC the expiration of the Bush tax cuts at the end of the year, followed by automatic spending cuts “is just simply not going to happen.”

He didn’t explain exactly how the government would avoid the cliff, but suggested the debt ceiling is a more important issue.

Click here for more fiscal cliff coverage by CNBC.

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UT economists forecast modest growth in 2013

Tennessee’s economy is moving forward, but progress remains painfully slow, according to a University of Tennessee report released today.

After “exceptionally strong rates of economic expansion” in the first quarter, the state economy slowed sharply in the second quarter as effects of the debt crisis in Europe rippled across the globe, says the fall 2012 Business and Economic Outlook.

However, UT economists see the state and national economies posting modest gains through the first half of 2013.

Significant economic improvement is still a year or two away, according to the study prepared by the university’s Center for Business and Economic Research.

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