An Optimistic Outlook

Ohio Wesleyan Hosts Panel Discussion on International, National, Local Economies
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Experts participating in Ohio Wesleyan University’s 2014 Economic Outlook Conference say they expect the economy to grow slowly over the coming year. Participants were moderator Goran Skosples (left) and panelists  Jim Newton, Edward S. Knotek II, and Ian Sheldon. (Photo by Anthony Gardner)

Experts participating in Ohio Wesleyan University’s 2014 Economic Outlook Conference say they expect the economy to grow slowly over the coming year. Participants were moderator Goran Skosples (left) and panelists Jim Newton, Edward S. Knotek II, and Ian Sheldon. (Photo by Anthony Gardner)

The economy continues to grow slowly, and experts participating in Ohio Wesleyan University’s 2014 Economic Outlook Conference say they expect this trend to continue in the coming year.

The panelists provided their thoughts and predictions for the current regional, national, and global economies at the Nov. 11 conference co-sponsored by the OWU Department of Economics and by the University’s Woltemade Center for Economics, Business and Entrepreneurship. Economics professor Goran Skosples, Ph.D., moderated the discussion.

Ian Sheldon, Ph.D., of The Ohio State University, kicked off the conference with insights on the international economy. He explained that the world output is predicted to grow by 3.6% in 2014 and that emerging and developing economies will account for much of this global growth. Regarding international trade, he foresees relatively low growth. He also said the United States is helping to provide global growth and that inflation pressures are subdued.

Edward S. Knotek II, Ph.D., of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, contributed a national perspective to the dialogue. He focused on two thoughts: Where are we today and where are we going? Today, he said, the housing market is on the mend and moving in the right direction. As for where we are going, Knotek said, the U.S. economy is picking up the pace of gross domestic product growth, labor markets are experiencing ongoing improvements, and inflation is projected to be low but to rise gradually over time.

Jim Newton, Ph.D., of Economic Perspectives Inc., works at a local level, specifically in Ohio. From 2010 to 2014, he said, there hasn’t been much change in the economy. Growth has been slow, and the recovery has been anemic. For example, Newton pointed to retailing, noting that it is becoming more and more pervasive. Retailers seek to accelerate growth by providing seasonal products earlier and by working to encourage consumers to make their purchases in advance. Newton predicts Ohio’s economy will increase by a few tenths of a percentage point in the coming year.

Learn more about the OWU Department of Economics and Woltemade Center.

2014 Economic Outlook Conference Webstream

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