In the spring of 2016, economic forecasters from Ohio had a sunny outlook. Executives of Ohio-based companies were bullish on making money and hiring workers. And why not? Ohio was outpacing the rest of the country in revenue growth— 10.9% year-to-date as compared to 6.3% growth in the nation as a whole. Source: The Plain Dealer.
An interesting turnaround from a local expert has surfaced. University of Cincinnati’s Economic Center, Julie Heath, shared the same sunny optimism in 2016 when she attended the annual economic outlook event at the original Montgomery Inn. She was quoted as saying “We’re strong in important, good-paying sectors. Our economy should do better than the U.S.” and “we’re sitting pretty good.”
Then in January of 2017, after the election of President Donald Trump, Julie Heath became “worried.” She is worried about Trump policies on import tariffs on products from overseas. She’s worried that building up our infrastructure will have a negative effect on spending because it could lead to inflation and increase debt, and lead to labor shortages when combined with tight immigration policies.
All these worries about higher prices, lost jobs, and trade wars have appeared to fizzle the spark of Ms. Heath’s 2016 year of sunshine. We have our fingers crossed that, considering her credentials the Cincinnati economy will say otherwise and prove her “worried” forecasts to be more political preference-oriented than fact-based.
We’re in no position to make economic predictions. Those are best left to the pundits and experts. But our work with clients gives us enough confidence to say that so far in 2017 we’re optimistic and from the sidelines cheering this amazing bull market. Well, at least for now!
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