Economists optimistic for 2011 economic recovery

It turns out there might be hope for 2011 in the job and housing markets. At least according to economists who are predicting a 4% growth in the nation’s economy for next year (up from earlier forecasts of 2.7%).

In just the past month, many forecasters have boosted their outlook for 2011, based on a series of positive economic reports, according to an article on MSNBC.com.

“Retailers are reporting a better than expected shopping holiday season. Manufacturers are seeing a pickup in production. And private sector job growth — though still very sluggish — has picked up from the first half of the year. But sadly it all adds up to another year of relatively modest growth, not nearly enough to make much of a dent in the painfully high 9.8% unemployment rate.”

Still, the economy is being hindered by the housing market with millions of homes facing foreclosure, and despite reports of a better than expected shopping season during these final weeks of 2010, consumers are still spending cautiously as a result of Ohio’s 9.8% unemployment rate (which for the first time in eight years is not higher than the national average).

In November, more than 500 OSCPA members ranked “attracting jobs” as one of the top priorities for Gov.-elect John Kasich’s administration in 2011. A full 79% of respondents in OSCPA’s eighth annual Ohio Business Poll predicted that it will take three or more years for Ohio’s unemployment rate to return to the 5.8% level at the beginning of the recession.

Poll results also indicated that the top issues Ohio leaders should focus on in 2011 include job loss (88%), government regulation (55%), municipal income tax administration (35%), and pension reform (32%).

What do you think? What are your predictions for Ohio’s and our nation’s economic state in 2011? Sound off by leaving your comment below.

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