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

Key Economic Insights

  • Global: The WTO is forecasting global merchandise trade volume growth of 10.8% in 2021 – up from 8.0% forecasted in March – followed by a 4.7% rise in 2022.
  • U.S.: PCE price index rose 4.4% from a year earlier, the largest annual increase since 1991. Reshoring Initiative projects the U.S. to add a total of 224,213 jobs from abroad in 2021, 38% more than in 2020.
  • Ohio: Ohio’s real GDP growth was 5.2% in Q2. New corporate projects to create more than $162M in investment across Ohio.

Global Insights

45.8% of the world population has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.  Global trade rebound beats expectations but marked by regional divergences.  China’s efforts to curb energy consumption and reduce carbon emissions, along with rising coal prices, are leading to power outages across manufacturing hubs, threatening to further disrupt strained global supply chains for semiconductors and other vital goods. China’s manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) fell to 49.6 in September, entering contractionary territory for the first time since February 2020, ending an 18-month expansionary period.

Euro-area consumer confidence rose to 117.8 from 117.6 in September as consumers were more optimistic and construction companies saw employment prospects improve.  OPEC’s 2021 World Oil Outlook forecasted global oil demand to continue to grow until the mid-2030s, after which it is set to plateau until 2045. Renewables other than hydropower and natural gas are set to grow the most between 2035 and 2045, when oil demand is expected to be flat, according to OPEC estimates.

U.S. Insights

64.1% of the U.S. population has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and 55.2% is fully vaccinated.  U.S. consumer confidence declined for the third consecutive month in September amid ongoing worries about the delta variant of the coronavirus. The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index fell to 109.3, down from 115.2 in August and the lowest reading since February.  Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell suggested that higher inflation may last longer than central bank officials had anticipated, but repeated his expectation that price surges should prove to be transitory.

Initial jobless claims rose to 362,000 for the week ended September 24 and continuing claims rose to 2.84M, an increase of 131,000.  U.S. Real GDP was revised upward to an annual rate of 6.7% in Q2 of 2021 according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.  The latest report from the Reshoring Initiative projects the U.S. to add a total of 224,213 jobs from abroad in 2021, 38% more than in 2020, due to reshoring and foreign direct investment.  The U.S. merchandise-trade deficit increased to $87.6B in August from a revised $86.8B in July.  Durable goods orders increased in August, though factory operators continued to confront parts/labor shortages and higher material costs. Demand for durable goods has increased in 15 of the last 16 months.

U.S. household net worth rose to a new record in Q2, increasing $5.8T (4.3%) from Q1 to $141.7T.  U.S. home price growth reached a record high for the fourth consecutive month in July, with the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller national home price index posting a 19.7% annual gain, up from 18.7% in June. Pending home sales increased 8.1% in August from July, above expectations for a 1% increase, and following two straight months of declines.  U.S. personal spending growth accelerated to 0.8% in August, and PCE price index rose 0.4% from a month earlier and 4.4% from a year earlier, the largest annual increase since 1991.  The U.S. ISM Manufacturing PMI came out at 61.1% in September, above 59.6% expected and 59.9 % in August.

Ohio Employment & Economic Insights

More than 6.3M Ohioans have started the COVID-19 vaccination process, marking 63.3% of the population currently eligible for COVID-19 vaccines.  Ohio’s real GDP growth was 5.2% in the second quarter of 2021.  The growing appeal of Ohio for tech giants comes down to a mantra in real estate: location, location, location. The Ohio To Work initiative is expanding to Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, Toledo and the Mahoning Valley.  Ohio’s minimum wage will increase from $8.80 to $9.30 per hour for non-tipped employees next year due to inflation. The minimum wage for tipped employees will increase from $4.40 to $4.65.

Ohio’s Transportation Review Advisory Council (TRAC) approved funding for a $32M interchange project in Greene County to enhance safety, provide economic development opportunities and improve traffic flow along U.S. 35.  The U.S. Department of Defense approved a $6M Defense Community Infrastructure (DCIP) grant to establish the “National Advanced Air Mobility Center of Excellence” at the Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport. The project will include a 30,000 SF office building, as well as 15,000 SF of aircraft hangar space for the Air Force and private industry.

Positive Company-Specific News Negative Company-Specific News
  • Koch Foods plans to create at least 400 new jobs upon completing a 400,000 SF addition in Fairfield. The total building investment for the expansion is estimated at $140M, with an estimated investment of $80M in new machinery and equipment.
  • SentriLock announced the opening of the company’s new 23,000 SF manufacturing center in West Chester. The company plans to hire 80 employees to fill newly created jobs between 2021 and 2023.
  • Babcock & Wilcox’s renewable segment was awarded a $35M contract by Greenland’s national waste management company, ESANI A/S, to supply and install advanced combustion, emissions control, and related equipment for its new municipal waste-to-energy facilities.
  • Ohio Valley Bank announced the opening of a new subsidiary Race Day Mortgage; an online-only consumer direct mortgage company positioned to disrupt the mortgage industry.
  • Dana secured a long-term contract with Bosch to jointly develop and optimize design and manufacturing processes of metallic bipolar plates for fuel cell stacks; expected to support fuel-cell powertrains for commercial-vehicle applications beginning in 2022.
  • Sherwin-Williams announced an agreement to acquire Oregon-based Specialty Polymers, a manufacturer and developer of water-based polymers.
  • Fifth Third Bank is among eight U.S. banks teaming with Mastercard on a digital loan program that features a no-interest option to meet growing consumer demand for flexible, digital-first payment options.
  • Ultra-Met, located in Urbana, was awarded a $47.8M contract for the manufacture of tungsten carbide components for the U.S. Army; will likely prompt more local jobs.
  • AEP and the City of Columbus announced an agreement to purchase all the electricity from a local 50-megawatt solar farm; will feed green power into the Greater Columbus electric grid by 2023.
  • Goodyear announced a multi-year collaboration with autonomous trucking company Gatik to advance the development of mobility solutions for the autonomous logistics industry.
  • General Aluminum faces a proposed $1.7M in penalties from the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration following 38 safety and health violations found during an investigation into the death of a worker.
  • Sherwin-Williams lowered its third-quarter sales and earnings forecasts due to worsening raw material constraints and pricing inflation.
  • Lordstown Motors is near an agreement to sell its Ohio factory.

 

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