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Economy / Market Analysis

Frontline: What’s Driving Down FDI?

Dan Emerson, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q1 2019)

The fear of trade wars and protectionist policies are being blamed for the overall decline in global foreign direct investment. More

Mid-Sized Urban Markets Compare Well with Mega-Cities

David J. Robinson, Principal, The Montrose Group, LLC (Q1 2019)

With their economic vitality and lower cost of doing business compared to their mega-city counterparts, growing mid-sized urban markets are succeeding in retaining and attracting high-wage jobs. More

One Year Later: The Impact of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Kyle Syers, Senior Consultant, Biggins Lacy Shapiro & Co. (Q4 2018)

We are just beginning to see the economic effect of the TCJA, passed in December 2017, but tax cuts are among many factors influencing U.S. investment decisions. More

The Key to Industrial Site Selection? Consumers and Labor

Rob Wheeler, Senior Vice President, Industrial Integrated Portfolio Services , JLL (Q4 2018)

Following our Consultants Forum, Area Development discussed the state of industrial real estate in an evolving world with Rob Wheeler, Senior Vice President, Integrated Portfolio Services, at JLL. More

Is Your New Economy Workforce Hiding Where You Least Expect It?

Chris Schwinden, Vice President, Site Selection Group (Q4 2018)

Area Development recently interviewed Chris Schwinden, Vice President, Site Selection Group, about how companies can assess a location’s true workforce potential in this exceptionally tight labor market. More

Is the Automotive Aftermarket Immune to E-Commerce?

Jeffrey Green, Managing Director, Global Occupier Services, Cushman & Wakefield and Ben Conwell, Senior Managing Director and Practice Leader, eCommerce Advisory Group , Cushman & Wakefield, Inc. (2018 Auto/Aero Site Guide)

Auto parts suppliers are responding to the growth in e-commerce with a multi-pronged strategy, from the expansion of retail locations to the addition of regional and “mega” distribution hubs. More

2018 Top States for Doing Business: Georgia Ranks #1 Fifth Year in a Row

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine and Steve Kaelble, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q3 2018)

Competitive labor environments and leading workforce development programs, low taxes and utility costs, favorable regulatory environments, and cooperative state governments are among the top-ranked states’ pro-business attributes. More

Which Locations Are Drawing FinTech Companies?

Tedd Carrison, Financial Analyst, CBRE and Kristin Sexton, Senior Managing Director, Labor Analytics, CBRE (Q3 2018)

Irrespective of their size, the strongest markets for financial technology companies have a workforce that aligns to best serve all distinctive skill set and cost requirements. More

Explaining the Emergence of Smaller and Western Metros

Joshua Wright, VP, Economic and Workforce Development, Emsi (Q2 2018)

With fast-growing populations and diverse economies, states in the West and Mountain region are showing significant economic growth, while smaller metros are benefitting from their larger urban neighbors’ spillover effect. More

Texas Today: Where Businesses Succeed

Steve Kaelble, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q2 2018)

The state of Texas continues to gain accolades for its pro-business environment, which is sustained by its skilled workforce, low taxes, favorable regulatory environment, and deal-closing funds among other attributes. More

2018 Leading Metro Locations: Pacific and Mountain Metros Dominate the List

Area Development Research Desk and Karen Thuermer, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q2 2018)

The 2018 Leading Metro Locations reflect the nation’s overall economic growth as the country enjoys the second-longest economic expansion on record, with many small and mid-size metros exhibiting economic strength. More

The Art and Science of Assessing the Labor Market

Doug Rasmussen, Director, Site Selection & Incentives Advisory, Duff & Phelps (Q2 2018)

Only through a combination of data analysis (the science) and labor interviews (the art) can a company be sure of choosing a location where its workforce needs are satisfied now and in the future. More

In Focus: Steel Tariffs to Prevent U.S. Economic Growth

Stephen Gray, CEO, Gray Construction (Q2 2018)

The recently enacted tariffs on steel and aluminum have created an uncertain investment climate for both domestic and foreign firms, causing companies to rethink their supply chain strategies and put their expansion plans on hold. More

2018 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards Recognize States’ Efforts to Attract High-Value Investment & Large Job-Creating Projects

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine and Steve Kaelble, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q2 2018)

More than 200 projects across multiple states brought with them the promise -- in total -- of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in investment. More

Retaking the Rust Belt

Rich Forslund, Executive Vice President, Colliers International (Q2 2018)

Across the Midwest, new life is being breathed into old industrial facilities that are becoming home to IoT incubators, office space, and other mixed-use development. More

32nd Annual Corporate Survey & the 14th Annual Consultants Survey

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Q1 2018)

Although the U.S. economy is strong, there may still be some hesitancy in investment decisions brought about by an uncertain legislative environment. More

Unemployment Numbers Reflect a Recovering Economy

Mark Crawford, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q4 2017)

As the U.S. economy has rebounded from the Great Recession and added jobs, unemployment has fallen to record lows in many states, creating worker shortages that need to be addressed. More

Tech Firms Find New Opportunity in Emerging Hotspots

Steffen Kammerer, Senior Vice President, Technology Practice Group, JLL (Q3 2017)

“Hidden gems” like Sacramento and Albany are winning more industry interest thanks to affordable, talent-rich ecosystems. More

The Select Few Metros Where Wages Are Really Growing

Joshua Wright, VP, Economic and Workforce Development, Emsi (Q2 2017)

A recent analysis from Emsi suggests that the labor market might not be as tight as the data shows — or at least not tight enough for businesses in aggregate to significantly drive up wages. More

Leading Locations for 2017: West Coast "Tech" Cities Top List, Smaller MSA's Show Workforce Chops

Area Development Research Desk and Mark Crawford, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q2 2017)

It’s not surprising to see larger MSAs at the top of the list due to their economic diversity and advantages of scale. But, mid-size and small cities built upon clusters that are in high demand, and where a prime workforce exists, can also be economic powerhouses. More

Texas: Attracting Large and Small Companies Through Innovative Initiatives

Dan Emerson, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q2 2017)

State and local leaders are continuing to drive economic growth in Texas through pro-business policies and workforce training initiatives. More

2017 Gold & Silver Shovel Awards Recognize States Compiling Healthy Rosters of New and Expanded Facilities

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine and Steve Kaelble, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q2 2017)

The work of economic development is a complicated mix of salesmanship, customer service, technical and legal expertise, communications, relationship-building, and a healthy dose of good fortune. More

Thinking Local: How to Find Manufacturing Talent

Joshua Wright, VP, Economic and Workforce Development, Emsi (Q2 2017)

The best answer to the skills-shortage question is that it depends on where you’re located, the positions you’re looking to fill - and perhaps most importantly, the compensation you’re willing to offer. More

Corporate Tax Reform to Have Positive, Domino Effect on U.S. Industrial Economy

Stephen Gray, CEO, Gray Construction (Q2 2017)

While the timing and details of a new corporate tax policy are still uncertain, it will change the business landscape for U.S. companies of all sizes for the better. More

Industry Leaders Speak on Issues Facing Small Manufacturers, and Optimism for the Future

Gray Construction (Q2 2017)

Small-to-medium-sized manufacturers are the backbone of the supply chain, making the parts and products that enable their larger counterparts to compete, grow and thrive. They constitute nearly 90 percent of manufacturing's contribution to the economy so it’s vital to understand and address the issues facing them. More

Workforce Supply and Demand in the Automotive Industry

Joshua Wright, VP, Economic and Workforce Development, Emsi (Q1 2017)

More technology and automation means auto makers require fewer workers (with relatively low labor costs), but their workforce needs are increasingly tech-focused—a trend that’s going to accelerate with the rise of driverless cars and trucks. More

31st Annual Survey of Corporate Executives: Confidence in U.S. Economy, Need for Investment in Infrastructure Reflected

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Q1 2017)

The Corporate Survey respondents feel confident about the economy under President Trump, but highway accessibility and skilled labor are still their primary concerns. More

13th Annual Consultants Survey: Confidence in U.S. Economy, Concern Over Proposed Trump Policies

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Q1 2017)

The responding consultants are confident that economic conditions under the Trump administration will be favorable to their clients moving ahead with new facilities plans, but also believe potential penalties for moving offshore will affect those plans. In fact, nearly two thirds believe there will be financial inducements to reshore operations. And 100 percent say finding skilled labor is the number-one priority. More

31st Annual Survey of Corporate Executives Commentary: Political Risk Comes to the United States

Dan Levine, Practice Leader, Location Strategies and Economic Development, Oxford Economics, Inc. (Q1 2017)

International site selection is already changing in response to our new era of presidential tweeting. To last year’s rankings must now be added the challenges presented by major shifts in federal policies and tactics. More

Editor's Note: Will Corporate Optimism Be Sustained?

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Q1 2017)

How the new administration addresses the issues of immigration and workforce training, as well as trade agreements, offshoring, and other concerns remains to be seen, but it will ultimately affect the sustainability of corporate optimism, plans for growth, and business competitiveness. More

Record Demand Brings New Heights and Challenges to Industrial Real Estate Market

Craig Meyer, President, Logistics and Industrial Services Group for the Americas, JLL (Q1 2017)

The continued growth of e-commerce, promised infrastructure upgrades, and new and creative development are some of the trends affecting the industrial real estate market. More

Navigating Uncharted Waters: 5 Trends Affecting Capital Investment Plans

Josh Bays, Principal, Site Selection Group, LLC (Q1 2017)

A new administration in Washington, escalating wages, and a dwindling supply of industrial real estate are just some of the trends that may cause companies to take a wait-and-see approach to capital investment. More

Editor’s Note: Manufacturing Execs Offer Insights on the Effect of Trump Administration’s Policies on Growth

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Q1 2017)

75% of C-level manufacturing executives surveyed believe that economic conditions under the new Trump administration will be favorable to moving ahead with new facility or facility expansion plans. More

Industrial Manufacturers’ Optimism Reflected in Expectations of Higher Revenue Growth, Increased Capital Spending

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Q1 2017)

PwC’s Q4/2016 Manufacturing Barometer reveals increased optimism about the U.S. economy. The senior executives of U.S.-based industrial manufacturing companies surveyed expect revenues to increase, and they are also increasing their capital spending plans. More

Data Center Outsourcing Trending Up

Kristina Metzger, Advisory & Transaction Services, Data Center Solutions Group, CBRE  and Jeff West, Research Director, Data Center Solutions Group, CBRE (Data Centers 2017)

Corporate data center sales volume is on the rise as enterprise moves to colocation and the cloud continue. More

Editor’s Note: About Those Manufacturing Jobs…

Geraldine Gambale, Editor, Area Development Magazine (Directory 2017)

Overall U.S. labor force participation rate (LPR) has trended downward since 2010 - which could be tied in part to skill sets not matching up to today’s job opportunities - creating a low unemployment paradox. More

Should “Urbanization” Drive the Location Decision?

Brian Corde, Managing Partner, Atlas Insight (Directory 2017)

Companies have been following the millennial talent pipeline to the urban locales this population cohort prefers, but as this group ages their lifestyle preferences — and your company’s location choices — may change. More

Real Estate Solutions Needed for Tech-Driven Auto Industry

Jeffrey Green, Managing Director, Global Occupier Services, Cushman & Wakefield and Paul Thurston, Vice President, Development and Pre-Construction, Becknell Industrial (Directory 2017)

On the verge of an automotive revolution, the CRE industry is working to meet the evolving needs of OEMs and parts suppliers in the middle of a short supply real estate market. More

Food Manufacturing Industry Responds to Transformative Change

Ken Reiff, Managing Director, Cushman & Wakefield and Chris Copenhaver, Director, Co-Lead Food & Beverage Practice, Cushman & Wakefield (2016 Food Processing)

Paradigm shifts in food processing, and improved economic conditions, have resulted in accelerated growth in project announcements as many larger food manufacturers gravitate to ground-up development and smaller, regional companies repurpose second-generation product. More

Critical Site Selection Factor #4: Occupancy OR Construction Costs

Steve Kaelble, Staff Editor, Area Development (Q4 2016)

It’s easy to see why occupancy or construction costs are a factor that a lot of people are keeping an eye on...these costs are trending upward. More