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Ohio to Seize Generational Opportunity in Economic Development in 2022

This report is a summary of third-party economic research and perspectives to foster communication with business and economic development stakeholders.

Mon Jan 03 2022

Key Economic Insights

  • Global: Visualizing the $94 Trillion global economy in one chart.
  • U.S.: GDP for Q3 was revised upward to 2.3% from preliminary estimates of 2.1%.
  • Ohio: The unemployment rate fell to 4.8% for November and labor force participation rose to 61.3%.

Global Insights

U.K. inflation hit a 10-year high in November, with the Consumer Price Index rising by an annual 5.1%. The Bank of England hiked interest rates for the first time since the onset of the pandemic, becoming the first major central bank to do so. The UK’s GDP for Q3 was revised down to 1.1% from initial estimates of 1.3%.

Foreign direct investment into China increased 15.9% year-on-year to $157.2B in the first 11 months of 2021, with high-tech industries seeing FDI inflow growth of 19.3%. Germany’s Producer Price Index rose 0.8% in November after rising 3.8% in October. Eurozone business growth slowed in December, with the IHS Markit Flash Composite Purchasing Managers Index dropping to 53.4, its lowest level since March. Consumer confidence in the EU fell below pre-pandemic levels in December. Nearly 58.3% of the eligible global population has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

U.S. Insights

U.S. GDP grew at a revised 2.3% rate in Q3 from preliminary estimates of 2.1%. The Conference Board’s Leading Economic Index increased 1.1% in November following a 0.9% rise in October. New Vintage Population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau showed the U.S. populationgrew by 392,665 (0.1%) over the last year, the lowest rate since the nation’s founding.

Initial jobless claims for the week ended Dec. 18 remained at 205,000, matching the prior week. Continuing claims fell to 1.859M from an upwardly revised 1.867M during the prior week. The Producer Price Index for final demand products increased 0.8% in November to an annual gain of 9.6%, the quickest pace on record. U.S. durable goods orders rose by 2.5% in November, and core capital goods orders decreased 0.1%. Import prices rose 0.7% during the month, and export prices rose 1.0%.

The Consumer Confidence Index rose to 115.8 in December, rising for the second consecutive month on expectations for economic expansion to continue into 2022. The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index increased to 98.4 in November, up from 98.2 in October. U.S. retail sales rose 0.3% in November after rising 1.8% in October. Consumer spending rose 0.6% during the month following a 1.4% gain in October. New home sales rose 12.4% to a 7-month high of 744,000 in November.

Ohio Employment & Economic Insights

Ohio’s unemployment rate fell to 4.8% in November, down from 5.1% in October. Nonagricultural wage and salary employment increased by 12,200 over the month to 5,391,100. The labor force participation rose to 61.3% in November, up from 61.2% in October. Employment in goods-producing industries increased 3,200 over the month, and employment in the private service-providing sector increased 8,100.

Ohio’s Real GDP rose 0.9% in Q3 of 2021, marking the 5th consecutive quarter of growth. A total of 184,494 new businesses have been created through the first 11 months of 2021, an 8% increase over 2020’s full-year record of 171,073.

Ohio State University landed the largest economic incentive in Columbus history — projected at $47M over the next 25 years — for the 12,000 jobs expected in its west campus Innovation District, supported in part by JobsOhio. The university and partners are investing up to $4B to redevelop nearly 270 acres into a mixed-use development. The city of Columbus approved a series of tax abatements for industrial projects; in total, eight projects received the incentives in exchange for 400 jobs and 5M square feet in development. Industrial vacancy rates in Central Ohio fell to 2.1% in Q4 (2021), an all-time low and following three consecutive record-setting quarters set this year.Ohio To Seize Generational Opportunity in Economic Development in 2022

MAGNET (the Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network) in Cleveland was selected as 1 of 60 finalists in the U.S. EDA’s Build Back Better Challenge for their project: “Northeast Ohio’s Advanced Manufacturing Cluster: Smart Manufacturing and Advanced Materials.” They will receive a $500,000 grant and compete for Phase 2 of the Challenge, which will award 20-30 regional coalitions up to $100M. Ground was broken for the new $52.8M Fairfax Market, a 40,000 SF mixed-use grocery store and apartment complex that will be part of the Cleveland Innovation District.

With the passage of the FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act, $1.35B in funding will go to upgrade Abrams tanks at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima. The bill also includes $1B for upgrading Stryker Vehicles and $331.5M to produce a Stryker chassis to support the Army’s Maneuver Short-Range Air Defense (M-SHORAD) program.

Ohio Company News

  • Axogen is targeting early 2022 to complete construction on a $50M, 100,000 SF facility in Vandalia. The building will be fully operational in 2023. The company estimates it will employ between 200 and 250 people.
  • Tekion launched an “Automotive Support Center of Excellence” in West Chester Township. The 15,000 SF office will initially support over 100 jobs. The company plans to hire an additional 60 employees by 2023.
  • FirstEnergy consummated an agreement to sell 25.6M of its common shares in a private placement, raising $1B for infrastructure growth.
  • One Medical opened a primary care clinic at Easton Town Center, the first of five planned in Central Ohio under a partnership with Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center.
  • H5 Data Centers acquired a purpose-built 107,000 SF facility originally developed by PNC Bank and built to Tier III standards to expand operations in Cincinnati.
  • Cincinnati Bell is opening a regional headquarters in Downtown Dayton in an effort to continue its expansion across the Miami Valley. The new location will open in spring 2022.
  • Expression Therapeutics opened a new 43,000 SF manufacturing facility in Cincinnat
  • i.Verso entered into a definitive merger agreement with Sweden-based BillerudKorsnäs AB for approximately $825M. The transaction is expected to close next year.
  • Hexion entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by affiliates of American Securities LLC. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2022.
  • Babcock & Wilcox agreed to cooperate with Dallas-based Applied Blockchain to develop power and clean energy sources to support the crypto miner’s operations.


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