Tag: economic forecasting

Medical Staffing Shortage: A Case of Supply and Demand

For my first blog post, I thought I would delve into something that is not only relevant to Maryland’s healthcare system and economy, but also significant on a worldwide scale: medical staffing. There is a major global shortage of healthcare workers, and one that will become more severe as the population grows and ages. The World Health Organization has estimated that by 2035 there will be a global deficit of 12.9 million skilled healthcare professionals, compared to a 2013 shortage estimate of 7.2 million. In the U.S., the Census estimates that the number of Americans aged 65 years or...

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2016 Economic Outlook Forum Wrap Up

Universities—their primary mission is to educate. Without a doubt, they also act as major economic engines for a region. As Greater Baltimore’s largest university and a major area employer, this is certainly true for Towson University. How does a region capitalize on the presence of its anchor institutions so that both the anchors and surrounding communities not only coexist, but thrive together? This was the focus of Towson University’s 2016 Economic Outlook Forum entitled: Placemaking Ideals and the Role of Towson University. Approximately 175 community and business leaders and educators met at Towson University’s West Village Commons to attend...

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TU Economic Outlook Forum—Placemaking Ideals

I can count (at least) two big events happening this November. One is a little thing you may have heard about (more on that in a few paragraphs). The other is the Economic Outlook Forum, hosted by the Regional Economic Studies Institute (RESI) at Towson University. For the past twenty years, RESI has invited business leaders, educators, and community members to convene to discuss the state of Maryland’s economy while focusing on a particular theme. This year our focus will be on Placemaking Ideals and the Role of Towson University.Edit Edit date and time What Is Placemaking? At its...

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Conscious Capitalism: 2015 EOC Recap

What a day! Last week Towson University celebrated the 20th Anniversary of its Economic Outlook Conference (EOC), while the University released its economic impact report for its 150th anniversary. Anniversaries offer an opportunity to reflect, but importantly, particularly for Towson University, we use this time to also look forward to our exciting future. We are a university embracing growth, change, innovation and new opportunities. Apropos of looking forward, Dr. Irani presented his Maryland Economic Forecast. While some in attendance seemed dismayed that his prediction indicated a slowdown in the economy on the horizon, the research was telling and provided...

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PROM: RESI’s New Occupational Tool

A few weeks ago, I published a blog post regarding nursing demand in Maryland—specifically, demand for registered nurses. At the time, I briefly introduced RESI’s new industry-to-occupation matrix and asked for suggestions for a name. Well, after at least a month of brainstorming (and voting!), we have finally settled on RESI’s Predictive Regional Occupational Matrix, or PROM. We’ll make this blog post RESI’s PROM-posal to you, and a more formal introduction of how PROM can be useful in analyzing the workforce needs of a region. Goodbye to the Old, Welcome the New! PROM is a tool that allows RESI...

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The Economic Outlook of Registered Nurses in Maryland

Everybody Likes Nurses . . . Nurses USA In June during the REMI webinar, I discussed the potential labor supply shortage for four-year degree workers in the construction industry. At the time, I suggested other occupations in Maryland that could experience this problem in the next few years. Naturally, my first thought was registered nurses (RNs)—many hospitals are beginning to require nurses to have four-year degrees and more training. Another growing issue is that the baby boomer population is now reaching retirement age. These issues, combined with the increase in health insurance access from the Affordable Care Act (ACA),...

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Economic Outlook Conference 2014: A Flat Recovery

As a new member of the RESI team, I had my first experience at the annual Economic Outlook Conference on Monday, November 17, held on-campus in the West Village Commons. In addition to the economic outlook presentation and forecast, the theme of this year’s conference was the impact of craft brewing in Maryland. After registration and a networking breakfast, the day officially began with Daraius Irani’s presentation “The Economic Recovery: Late to its Own Party.” As the title suggests, the presentation focused on how, even though the U.S. and Maryland economies are no longer in recessions, economic conditions are still subpar due to a lackluster recovery. For example, though Maryland has regained all of the jobs that were lost during the recession, these jobs are skewed towards low-wage, often part-time opportunities. Understandably, the RESI economic forecast was not exactly brewing with good optimistic news (excuse the puns, they are just inevitable). This year’s forecast predicts that employment growth will not exceed 0.5% annually from 2014 to 2017, which is not exactly great news for the state. One of the questions we get asked frequently is how accurate our forecast can be. When RESI reexamined our forecast from last year’s conference to compare it to the actual data from the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation (DLLR) RESI’s forecast was under by only 152 jobs. Yes, RESI predicted that...

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Loyalty Programs, Gasoline, and Maryland’s Economy

Loyalty programs have been around for ages. The idea behind them is to gain information about consumers, then tailor a store’s offers to them to increase their spending in store and to ward off competition. Often, these programs were done on a store-by-store basis and offers were targeted for their stores alone. However, in the last few years the economy has witnessed the emergence of cross-store loyalty programs. For example, gas rewards and grocery stores. Currently there are several versions of this program.  For example, the grocery chain Giant has partnered with Shell and, similarly, Safeway has partnered with Exxon/Mobil. Under these programs, a consumer purchasing their weekly groceries at Giant or Safeway can swipe their “Bonus” or “Rewards” card and redeem savings on their groceries. Then, the additional cross-store rewards begin. The store states that for every dollar a consumer spends, they will receive a specific number of gas rewards points. Using their newly accrued rewards points, grocery consumers can proceed to the pump and enter their card number, redeeming these points to reduce their per gallon price for gas. As Morgan and Hunt (1994) state in their research, these programs operate under the assumption that both the consumer and the retailer are committed to specific brands. However, as Liu (2007) points out, the consumer preference for grocery stores and gasoline brands may be relatively low and therefore...

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Economic Modeling Tools: Static Versus Dynamic

One of my favorite TV characters is Tim “the tool man” Taylor, and one of his great loves was new power tools. We can all remember the grunts of joy when a new tool passed through his hands. Invariably, he would use the tool incorrectly or overbuild something with the new tool—a lawnmower with 500 HP, for instance. For the last 20 years, RESI has undertaken numerous economic and fiscal impact models for federal, state, and local government as well as the private sector—by my last count, well over 100 studies. In each study, we used IMPLAN, a wonderful static input-output modeling tool. This past year, RESI has begun to use REMI PI+, a dynamic input-output modeling tool, for our economic and fiscal impact projects. REMI allows us to conduct dynamic economic and fiscal policy analysis. Cue manly grunt of joy. What are the benefits of dynamic analysis? Dynamic economic and fiscal policy analysis has been around since the early 90s and is currently used by state and federal governments to determine future policy impacts. The benefit to the dynamic aspect of analysis is the ability to estimate the compounding effect of a one-time shock over years. Traditional static analysis models are good for single-time projects, but to determine the impact of an Earned Income Tax Credit, the better method would be to create a dynamic forecast with a...

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Are We There Yet? 2011 Economic Outlook Conference Wrap-Up

It’s a new year and a chance for us to present our yearly outlook for the economy. The Regional Economic Studies Institute (RESI) hosted its 14th annual Economic Outlook Conference on February 16, 2011 at the BWI Hilton Hotel.  As in years past, the conference provided a platform to present RESI’s economic overview and forecast. The theme for this year’s conference was Are We There Yet? The phrase—commonly used by kids during long car trips—highlighted the question mark surrounding the economic recovery and our eagerness to finally bounce back from the woes that have afflicted over the last three years. There are many indicators that help us gauge whether the economy is back on track and while many continue to show signs of distress (i.e. the labor market) the road ahead is looking a lot brighter than it was a year ago.  While we may not be “there” just yet, at least we know that we are not headed in the opposite direction anymore.  If you are interested in seeing the presentation and getting a little more detail please see this link. As I indicated during my last post, this year, RESI participated in a crowd-sourcing activity that involved getting feedback from attendees regarding what they would do if they had power over fiscal, monetary and housing policies.   The top answers submitted by attendees were revealed family feud style.  ...

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