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North Carolina’s Economic Forecast

It was our tremendous pleasure to sponsor the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce’s 2017 Economic Forecast on Thursday, January 5th.  The Economic Forecast provided insight on the direction of both our regional and national economy in the upcoming year.  A video of the discussion, led by Mark Vitner and John Graham, is available at the end of this article, courtesy of WRAL.

Mark Vitner is a Managing Director and Senior Economist with Wells Fargo.  Mark’s responsibilities include tracking regional and national economic trends.  He is a regular contributor to Wells Fargo’s Monthly Economic Outlook as well as the Weekly Economic and Financial Commentary.  Mark’s slideshow presentation from the Economic Forecast is available online.

John Graham is the D. Richard Mead Jr. Family Professor of Finance with the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.  He also serves as the Director for Duke University’s Global Business Outlook, a quarterly CFO survey that assesses the business climate and topical economic issues around the world.  John’s slideshow and survey results from the Economic Forecast are also available online.

As a native Raleigh business, Greene Resources cares deeply about the growth and development of North Carolina.  As experts in recruiting and hiring, we monitor hiring trends as they develop and use this information to help advise our customers as they consider their recruiting needs.  According to Mr. Vitner and Dr. Graham, here are some of the trends to expect regarding the local and national economy.

Local Facts and Figures

  • Raleigh’s employment rates are expected to grow, with an estimated 12,000 new jobs coming to the Triangle.
  • Raleigh has the second highest GDP growth across all metro hubs in the nation.
  • Job growth has steadily gained momentum across North Carolina, specifically in professional services, construction, retail, and the leisure and hospitality sectors.
  • The IT sector in the Triangle is growing 1% faster than the rest of the United States.
  • Jobs in manufacturing are growing at a slower rate, but are expected to continue growing, especially within in the aviation industry.

 Predictions and Trends for 2017

  • The era of low interest rates is coming to an end; interest rates are predicted to rise twice in 2017.
  • Economic policies are expected to be focused on economic growth.
  • When surveyed in the past quarter, CFOs in the United States are more optimistic about the national economy than any other quarter surveyed in the past 15 years. North Carolina’s optimism index is even higher than the US average.
  • Wages are expected to rise 3.1%.

Potential Concerns for Employers and Businesses

  • The two greatest concerns of United States and North Carolina businesses are economic uncertainty followed by the cost of benefits.
  • Another concern continuing to climb up the list is the difficulty in attracting and retaining qualified employees. As the economy improves, it becomes harder to attract and retain employees as more and better opportunities become accessible to job seekers.
  • 70% of businesses surveyed were not sure how the recent election will impact their business with regards to corporate tax policies or regulatory policy changes.

Overall, optimism in the economic climate has jumped significantly in the past year with economists anticipating improvements in the regulatory and tax environment as well as continued employment growth.  Even if significant changes or improvements are made to the economy, the actual impact it will have on businesses and individuals will be delayed and it will take some time before the effects are felt.

Much like the optimistic outlook shared at the Economic Forecast, at Greene Resources, we approach every day and every experience with optimism. Our vision is to connect people and companies in such a way that jobs become purposeful, impactful, and long-term careers.  It’s not about filling a job opening.  It’s about finding the one person who will make a lasting impact on your company’s team and culture as well as feel accomplished through their work. We would love the opportunity to work with you and are optimistic that we can help your business attract, locate, and land top talent in 2017.

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