Local Economics: Steady Growth Unless we go Over the Cliff
The local breakdown:
• Independence – a 6.9 percent jobless rate in October, compared with a 2012 high of 8.5 percent in February.
• Blue Springs – 5.6 percent, compared with a 2012 high of 6.9 percent in February.
• Jackson County as a whole – 7.4 percent, compared with 2012 high of 8.9 percent in February.
A twice-a-year economic forecast for the metro area, just released by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, sees steady improvement into 2013 and 2014 – assuming Congress and the president head of the so-called fiscal cliff, a series of federal spending cuts and expiring tax cuts set for Jan. 1.
No fiscal cliff? The area’s gross regional product grows 3.2 percent in 2013 and 4.9 percent in 2014. That means 21,200 more jobs in 2013 and 33,400 in 2014, on top of the 17,400 created this year.
But if the country goes over the fiscal cliff? The area would lose 2,100 jobs next year in a brief, shallow recession and then add just 15,300 jobs in 2014.
Failure to avert the fiscal cliff ‘dooms 2013’s chances to be a year where nearly all industries grow,’ says the report.