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State of Ohio Upgraded to AAA by Fitch Ratings

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

Mon Sep 12 2022
Economic Insights graphic

Key Economic Insights

  • U.S.: Nonfarm payrolls increased by 315,000 in August, and the unemployment rate rose to 3.7%.
  • Ohio: With Ohio being upgraded to AAA by Fitch Ratings, the state is now one of 13 states rated AAA by Fitch nationally.

U.S. Insights

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 315,000 in August, and the unemployment rate rose to 3.7%. The labor force participation rate increased to 62.4% during the month but still remains 1.0% below its February 2020 level. Job openings rose to 11.2M in July, up from 10.7M in June. Hires (6.4M) and separations (5.9M) both remained stable, and quits (4.2M) and layoffs and discharges (1.4M) were little changed from June. Weekly jobless claims fell to the lowest level since late June during the week ended August 27, falling to 232,000. Continuous claims increased to 1.44M, up 26,000 from the prior week.

U.S. Real GDP was revised upward to -0.6% for Q2 2022 from prior estimates of -0.9%. The decline in Q2 follows a negative growth of 1.6% in Q1. Despite the decline in GDP, Real Gross Domestic Income (GDI) increased 1.4% in Q2 following growth of 1.8% in Q1. Core capital goods orders rose 0.4% in July. Durable goods orders remained unchanged in July after rising 2.2% in June. ISM Manufacturing PMI registered 52.8 in August, unchanged from July and marking the 27th consecutive months of expansion. U.S. Factory Orders fell 1% in July, below forecasts for a gain of 0.2%.

Consumer spending rose 0.1% in July. The personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index, the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation, fell 0.1% during the month. On an annualized basis through July, the index has increased 6.3%. Core PCE rose 0.1% during the month to a 4.6% annual increase. Consumer confidence showed signs of improvement in August. The University of Michigan’s Consumer Confidence Index final August reading was 58.2, up 13% from July and continuing to climb from the lowest reading on record in June 2022. The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index increased in August after declining in each of the past three months. The Index now stands at 103.2, up from 95.3 in July.

New home sales in the U.S. fell 12.6% in July to the slowest pace since early 2016. The National Association of Realtors’ Pending Home Sales Index dropped 1.0% to 89.8 in July, the lowest level since April 2020. U.S. home price growth decelerated in June, with the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index posting a 18% annual gain, down from 19.9% in May.

Ohio Employment & Economic Insights

The Ohio Tax Credit Authority approved assistance for ten economic development projects during their monthly meeting in August. Collectively the projects are set to create 767 new jobs, retaining 2,032 and resulting in more than $68M in new payroll and over $318M in investments across Ohio.

The Reshoring Initiative released its bi-annual data report for the first half of 2022. According to the report, U.S. companies are on pace to reshore a record number of jobs this year. The current 2022 projection of jobs announced is around 350,000 – which would surpass the record of 260,000 set in 2021. The report ranks Ohio #4 among states in projected 2022 reshored jobs announced, projected at nearly 24,000. The Zero Emission Transportation Association has ranked Ohio #9 on its list of the top 10 states for EV investment.

Five workforce organizations in the Greater Cincinnati region have formed a network called the Talent Collaborative aimed at streamlining communication, reducing duplication, and partnering with the National Fund for Workforce Solutions. Duke Energy has funded eight projects totaling $250,000 in Greater Cincinnati through Urban Revitalization grants, supporting development that addresses urban blight while creating jobs.

The Ohio State University’s Ohio Stadium, celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2022, will feature the first-time-ever sponsor-named Safelite Field, as part of a multi-year partnership between the Columbus-based company and Ohio State Sports Properties.

Ohio Company News

  • Advanced Drainage Systems will add 200 jobs and invest $65M in a new 110,000 SF HQ and engineering and technology center in Hilliard.
  • Western Alliance Bank expects to create 150 jobs, adding $18.8M in new payroll as a result of the company’s third technology employment hub in the U.S. in Central Ohio.
  • IMCO Carbide Tool will invest $39M to expand its plant in Perrysburg by 15,000 SF and will nearly double its workforce with an additional 92 employees.
  • DRB Systems expects to create 83 new jobs, generating $5.1M in new payroll as part of a $1M expansion project in Summit County.
  • Cold Jet plans to combine its corporate HQ and manufacturing and assembly facilities into one main campus in Loveland, investing $4.9M and adding 67 new jobs.
  • Driverge Vehicle Innovations will bring 67 jobs to Akron at its new HQ at Chapel Hill Business Park.
  • Parker Hannifin plans to create 60 new jobs as part of a $10M expansion in Mentor.
  • Urban Land Co. and LINK is expanding in Columbus, creating 40 new jobs and retaining 26.
  • General Mills will invest $100M in a capacity expansion project in Wellston, creating 30 new jobs and retaining nearly 1,000 existing jobs.
  • Ultimate Solutions USA will expand to the Columbus area with a new location in Gahanna, creating 30 new jobs. This will be the company’s first Ohio location.
  • DEWESoft, a data acquisition systems software company, plans to hire 17 new employees and construct a $6M, 20,000 SF addition to its North American HQ in Whitehouse.
  • Cologix will expand its data center campus in Columbus, investing $152M and creating 15 new jobs.
  • First Turn Trucking and Trinity Salvage will invest $210,000 in a new warehouse and transloading yard in West Union, creating 5 new jobs.
  • First Solar will invest $185M to expand its facilities in Perrysburg and Lake Township, adding 0.9 gigawatts of solar panel production capacity by 2025.
  • The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center, partnering with Kindred Rehabilitation Services, announced plans to build and operate a new 80-bed, 86,000 SF, adult inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Columbus.
  • DBT-Data will build a $1B data center complex for a confidential end user in New Albany.
  • Standard Bariatrics, a Blue Ash-based MedTech company developing devices for the surgical treatment of obesity, will be acquired by Teleflex for $300M.
  • Involta will expand its data center in Independence with 14,000 SF of space and 1MW of added power.
  • Airgas has officially opened its ALTEC Engineering Solutions Center in Twinsburg, Ohio. The 42,000 SF center aims to consolidate 35 on-site and 45 remote employees who belong to the company's engineering solutions and advanced fabrication teams.
  • Winsupply marked the opening of its Richard W. Schwartz Center for Innovation in Moraine. The Center for Innovation will serve as a training facility for Winsupply support services employees and will pilot and finalize support services for the company's more than 600 distributor locations.
  • Montauk Renewables will build a second renewable natural gas procession plant at its Apex landfill project in Jefferson County. It will add up to 2,100 MMBtu/day in production from biogas feedstock.
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