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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 during the COVID-19 crisis.

Key Economic Insights

  • Global: The eurozone economy is likely to grow at an annualized rate of 6% in Q2 2021.
  • U.S.: U.S. unemployment claims hit new COVID-19 pandemic low.
  • Ohio: In March, Ohioans broke this monthly record with 19,694 new business filings with the Ohio Secretary of State Business Services Division.

 

Global Insights

At Earth Day Climate Summit, President Biden pushed for sharp cut to greenhouse-gas emissions in the next decade, as other countries also promised climate action and some urged rich nations to shoulder more responsibility.  Soaring emissions this year are on track to reverse a big chunk of last year’s sharp reduction as IEA said emissions are expected to jump 4.8%, the biggest annual gain since 2010.

The European Central Bank kept its aggressive monetary stimulus unchanged, seeking to support eurozone governments and businesses through a fresh wave of COVID-19 infections that likely tipped the bloc back into recession early this year.  The eurozone economy is likely to grow at an annualized rate of 6% in the second quarter of 2021, after contracting 1% in the first three months of the year, according to JPMorgan.  EU is proposing one of the first laws globally to regulate the use of artificial intelligence for applications like hiring and policing.  India reported more than 314,000 new coronavirus cases, the world’s biggest ever single day jump of new infections, as the country struggled to keep a surge of infections from overwhelming its healthcare system.

U.S. Insights

Worker filings for jobless benefits declined to 547,000 last week, a new pandemic low that adds to evidence of a strengthening labor market and overall economic recovery.  The U.S. economy was predicted to grow on average 6.2% this year, the brightest outlook since polling began for the period more than two years ago and if achieved would mark the fastest annual expansion since 1984.  The median existing-home price rose 17.2% in March from a year earlier to $329,100, the highest level on record, as a shortage of homes limited transactions. The U.S. remains the top foreign direct investment destination amid investor caution according to the 2021 Kearney FDI Confidence Index.

The $1.9T American Rescue Plan Act is designed to support the distribution of vaccines and accelerate the post-COVID-19 economic recovery.  The ARP Act includes $350B in funding for state and local governments—the largest allocation to localities to date.  Senate Republicans proposed a $568B plan for federal investments in infrastructure on Thursday, far below the $2T package proposed by the President.

The U.S. is facing a lithium-ion battery shortage as electric vehicle production ramps up.  Amazon announced nine new utility-scale wind and solar energy projects in the U.S., Canada, Spain, Sweden, and the UK.  Major airlines reiterated their confidence that the travel market, at least for leisure, is rebounding from the deep losses suffered during the coronavirus pandemic.  They hope the trend will continue into the summer vacation season.

The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) applauded congressional introduction of the Endless Frontier Act (S.1260), bipartisan legislation that seeks to maintain and build on U.S. science and technology leadership – including in semiconductors – by restructuring the National Science Foundation and authorizing more than $100B for science and technology initiatives.

Ohio Employment & Economic Insights

In 2020, despite the pandemic, Ohioans created a record 171,073 new businesses and set the single month all-time record with 18,659 new business filings in July 2020.  Last month, Ohioans broke this monthly record with 19,694 new business filings with the Ohio Secretary of State Business Services Division.  This number is a 47% increase from one year ago in March 2020.

More than 4,500 residents at 18 properties owned by the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) will soon receive free access to high-speed broadband service through a new collaboration with Charter Communications and its Spectrum Community Solutions organization.

 

Positive Company-Specific News

  • Dana published A Better Way — the company’s all-digital and interactive annual Sustainability and Social Responsibility Report.
  • The Wendy’s Company released its 2020 Corporate Responsibility Report detailing the progress made across its three key focus areas of Food, People and Footprint.
  • As the world recognizes Earth Day, Diebold Nixdorf continues to contribute to a more sustainable world.
  • Greif set a new goal to reduce its absolute Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions 28% by 2030.
  • Procter & Gamble topped Wall Street’s estimates for its fiscal third-quarter earnings and revenue. The company also said that it will raise prices on some of its products to combat rising commodity costs.
  • CVG reported 38% cargo traffic growth in early 2021, preps for more expansion.
  • Huntington reported net income for the 2021 first quarter of $532M, an increase of $484M from a year-ago.
  • AEP reported strong Q-1 2021 earnings and plans to add nearly 16,600MW of new renewables by 2030.
  • The Ohio Department of Medicaid selected UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Ohio as one of six organizations to administer its reimagined Medicaid program, effective early 2022.
  • The University of Cincinnati (UC) announced a new partnership with Great American Insurance Group (GAIG).
  • Sequoia Financial Group in Akron agreed to acquire Columbus-based wealth manager Wealthstone Advisors. Sequoia Financial Group will employ about 110 people and have more than $7B in assets.
  • FC Cincinnati is pleased to announce Total Quality Logistics (TQL) as the official naming rights partner of “TQL Stadium”, opening May 1, 2021.
  • White Castle invites everyone who has had a COVID-19 vaccine to stop by their local Castle for a complimentary dessert-on-a-stick.

 

Resources