Tuesday, January 27, 2009

2009 Economic Forecast: A Dark Tunnel, with a Light at the End

I attended the 2009 Economic Forecast breakfast put on by the Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky Chambers this morning. It painted a challenging picture.

Nationally, while the economist who spoke predicted several more quarters of tough times--and an overall down year in 2009--he did project that aspects of the economy should pick up toward the end of the year.

On a regional level, "it's going to be a rough year for the Greater Cincinnati economy." The economist predicted lower GDP, and lower employment for 2009. Again, she predicted that the decline will be most dramatic in the first part of the year, with the hope that things pick up in the latter half.

Both presenters placed strong emphasis on the importance of the stimulus in kickstarting the economy in 2009.

This forecast, combined with the news we received yesterday that our Local Government Fund allocation from the state was slashed $640,000 more than we had anticipated (and we had anticipated a large cut), and recent unemployment numbers, reinforces several things:
  • we must continue to search for each and every way possible to kickstart the local economy
  • with such turbulent and unpredictable times ahead of us, we must be incredibly conservative protecting our County reserve fund, and any general fund dollars
  • I am glad that we projected revenues so conservatively going into the year -- assuming a 4% sales tax decrease (from the prior year) for 4 months, then a 2% decrease for each month following. Knock on wood--those pretty negative forecasts will hold.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This going to sound stupid, but previously mentioned that becoming the manufacturing hub for LED lighting would be a unique market in the overall quest to reduce energy use.

Low and behold, CNN is reporting that the LED lighting system is starting to displace "the bulb" and the condensed flourescent replacement - and everything is heading for the LED bulbs.

Now, it looks like we missed the boat on seeking to be the manufacturing hub for this industry (maybe there's still a chance to get in on it)but, if the whole gov't switches to the new LED our lighting bill will be reduced to 10% of the current costs.

I believe that the LED will become mandatory law across the country and regular bulbs will be outlawed as a waste of money and electricity.

We will need to find a niche to survive this.

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