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.
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.
Knoxville fares better than most metropolitan areas nationwide in a new report by the Brookings Institution that examines how education effects unemployment.
Among the 100 largest metropolitan markets, Knoxville ranks 16th on the education gap index. (Ranking 1st indicates the top performing metro and 100th is the worst performer.)
“Narrowing the education gap is particularly important for improving the long-term health of metropolitan economies,” Jonathan Rothwell, senior research associate and report author, says in a news release. “Metro areas with wide education gaps have higher unemployment, but metro areas with narrow education gaps have lower unemployment, more job creation, and more job openings.”
The education gap index is calculated as “as the years of education required by the average job vacancy in a metropolitan area divided by the years of education attained by the average working-age person in that metropolitan area,” according to the report.
Job creation is showing some improvement, but millions of Americans are still out of work. To help job seekers find work, the global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc. will again offer free job-search advice to unemployed workers.
The firm’s 26th annual national job-search call-in will be held Dec. 27 and 28 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days.
Updated with comments from Regal Entertainment Group CEO Amy Miles
A new Sony Corp. policy regarding disposable 3D glasses could make some of next summer’s 3D movies more expensive for consumers and theater owners.
Sony’s movie studio has told Knoxville-based Regal Entertainment Group and other theater owners that it will no longer pay the millions of dollars per film it costs to provide disposable glasses for 3D movies, according to a story in The Hollywood Reporter.
In response to Sony’s new policy, Regal CEO Amy Miles said Wednesday that the Regal is committed to holding down costs for its customers and may devote fewer screens to show Sony 3D movies.
The battle over who pays for 3D glasses comes at a time when theater owners face sluggish revenue growth and consumers struggle with high unemployment and a weak economy.
Registration for the Knoxville Economics Forum’s spring event featuring Dennis Lockhart, president of the Atlanta Federal Reserve and a member of the Federal Open Market Committee, will be closed on Monday, the forum announced.
The event will be held Friday, April 8, at Club LeConte in the First Tennessee Building, 800 S. Gay St. The breakfast meeting starts at 7:30 a.m. Lockhart is scheduled to speak at 8 a.m.
Job creation remains sluggish and housing prices continue to fall, but Knoxville’s regional economy is in better shape than most of the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the country, according to a Brookings Institution report released today.
Knoxville ranks 22nd in unemployment rate — 7.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010 — and 24th in employment rate change — 0.3 percent growth — from the third to the fourth quarter, according to Brookings March 2011 MetroMonitor.
Metro Knoxville’s gross metropolitan product has grown 4.8 percent since the second quarter of 2009 (the official end of the recession), good for a 45th ranking. However, Knoxville’s 1 percent GMP growth in the fourth quarter ranked 27th in the country.