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Old 01-21-2011, 07:44 PM
Location: Columbus, GA and Brookhaven, GA
4,725 posts, read 6,608,561 times
Reputation: 1464


The Columbus area got clobbered half as hard as the rest of Georgia from the Great Recession. And it is poised to perform much better economically than other areas of the state this year and next.

The 21st annual Columbus Regional Bi-State Economic Outlook, which drew about 250 local business and community leaders, painted a picture of improving Georgia and U.S. economies. But it was the Columbus region that appeared to stand apart from other Georgia cities.

Humphreys is director of UGA’s Selig Center for Economic Growth, which crunches data on the state and its metro areas. For instance, he noted the Columbus metro area had lost 6,000 jobs from November 2007 to September 2009, just after the recession’s official end, a 4.7 percent decline.

That compares to the nation losing 6.1 percent of its jobs over the same period and Georgia being hit even harder, shedding 8.4 percent of jobs.

The outlook only looks to get even better as Fort Benning absorbs the U.S. Army Armor Center and School, with the post work force growing by 11,000 this year. Factor in at least 6,000 more jobs being created off base to serve the additional population, for a total of 17,000.

Economists see a ripple effect from the military buildup spilling over into 2012.

Humphreys also threw out other names — NCR, McCauley Propeller Systems, Kysor/Warren, Nash-Finch and Johnson Controls — saying those companies all are contributing to a growing work force. Adding them up — and including the multiplier effect of businesses generated to support job growth — he listed 17,000 jobs from Fort Benning’s expansion, 13,700 from Kia and its suppliers, and 2,500 from the mix of corporate employers.

On the housing front, Humphreys said the Columbus market’s home prices also had held up better than both the state and the nation. In the third quarter of 2010, existing home prices were only off about 7 percent from their peak in late 2005. That compares to a 14-percent drop nationally and 19 percent for Georgia.

A critical factor is that Columbus existing home prices avoided a huge bubble, only rising 39 percent at their peak. Georgia experienced a 33 percent gain, while the U.S. averaged a 57 percent increase. Some states, however, averaged a 107 percent jump in prices, creating a bubble just waiting to pop.

Again, the economist mentioned Fort Benning as the catalyst for creating substantial new demand in the coming months and absorbing excess inventory.

Addressing the state of the Georgia and U.S. economies Friday was Robert Sumichrast, dean of UGA’s Terry College of Business, which hosted the event. He said the state’s economy should expand by 2.9 percent this year, up from 1 percent in 2010. The U.S. economy will grow 2.8 percent in 2011, compared to 3 percent last year. That marks the first time in seven years Georgia has performed on par with the nation
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Old 07-25-2012, 01:29 PM
Location: GEORGIA
80 posts, read 243,668 times
Reputation: 18
I hate to argue with esteemed economists, but the levels of net secondary job generation from Fort Benning are too high. The bottom line is: projected military and some federal and a few contractor jobs were gained. Some were already in place. But the number of contractor jobs was pale. Even tho there are considerable constructiin jobs on Benning, these will dropo off with completiin of facilities, familky housing rebuild, and completion of martin Army Hospital in the next several years.
The Chamber had projected that the area would gain some 30,000 people from Benning expansion--as many as live in the city of La Grange. After the dust cleared--October 2011--a gain of fewer than 20,000 was estimated.
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