By Doresa Banning
According to experts, the outlook for Nevada’s economy this year is positive and projected to fare at least as well as it did, or perhaps even better, in 2018. However, one or more known or unknown wild cards could have a dampening effect.
Some of the indicators that support the forecast in Southern Nevada include strong employment and population growth, robust consumer spending, increasing personal income and high taxable sales.
“We do expect continued expansion going into 2019,” said Jeremy Aguero, principal analyst, Applied Analysis, a Las Vegas-based research firm.
The main catalyst for 2019 will still be visitors and stability in the region’s tourism industry, as it represents 30 percent of the local economy. Another influencing factor is growth in the autonomous vehicles field, and perhaps we’ll see some of them on the streets. A third is continued and unhampered construction of the $23 billion worth of projects—resort, entertainment and transportation—in the pipeline.
“Its success in terms of being able to attract sufficient workers and maintain the timeline will be important to our economy overall,” said Aguero.
As for Northern Nevada, the economy should remain steady with job growth, its primary driver for the past four years, and employment continuing to look strong, said Brian Bonnenfant, project manager, University of Nevada, Reno’s Center for Regional Studies.
A key influential factor in 2019 will be access to financing. If it continues to be accessible, the economy should keep humming along as it did in 2018. If, on the other hand, lending tightens, which would be reflected in capital expenditure numbers, then that likely would slow the economy.
For Nevada as a whole, the national economy’s health, currently robust and expected to keep growing, will play a key role. However, federal and international uncertainties could have a weakening effect on the U.S. economy and, therefore, the Silver State’s. Those wild cards include what might happen with interest rates, tariffs, trade, durable goods orders, investments and home construction and sales.
A significant statewide unknown is what will happen as a result of the changes and new political makeup of the Nevada leadership at the state and legislative levels, particularly with respect to taxes and regulations.
“What develops as a result of that is going to be extremely important, not only to 2019 but probably well into the future,” Aguero said.
Also on Nevadans’ minds is the worry another recession will come. The question is, when?
Read the rest of the article at nevadabusiness.com.