Forecast: Georgia, Augusta poised for growth in 2014

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ATLANTA — The factors needed for healthy economic growth are falling into place, according to Georgia State University’s quarterly forecast released Wednesday.

“We could be poised for a takeoff in growth,” said Rajeev Dhawan, the director of the school’s Economic Forecasting Center.

In Augusta, the outlook includes job growth to finish this year at 1.4 percent but rises to 1.6 percent next year.

“Augusta also may see 1,500 new soldiers at Fort Gordon in an effort by the Army to consolidate cyberspace training. Multifamily housing demand shows no signs of slowing, as a new mixed-use project featuring 300 apartments begins construction in early 2014,” he said.

Georgia’s employment growth rate in August was better than the nation’s, and the center’s forecast calls for the state to create 85,000 jobs this year, compared with 63,000 in 2012. Next year, job creation will top 78,000, but an increasing share of them will be higher-paying.

“The quality of the jobs gained, as measured by personal income or wage growth, has been less than stellar,” Dhawan said.

Georgia’s unemployment rate will wind up averaging 8.5 percent this year, but decline to 8.2 next year and fall to 7.3 the following 12 months.

Sectors such as professional-and-business services, transportation and hospitality have regained all the jobs they shed during the Great Recession. Education and health care have been adding while the other sectors were shrinking, but some are still trying to recover; namely, manufacturing, finance, information, wholesale and retail trade, along with both state and local government.

Local governments – including school boards – are the latest sector to feel the crush of the recession because of declines in property values. Many governments have nearly depleted reserves. But the forecast predicts a new wave of investment is helping property values and the construction industry to boot.

Overall, the state and national economies could launch skyward if some hurdles arise. For instance, another federal budget standoff that results in a new government shutdown would dampen consumer and corporate confidence, Dhawan warned. In addition, what he calls “global malaise” has the potential to depress exports which would weaken U.S. manufacturing, business investment and job creation.

Nevertheless, he is optimistic about 2015, calling for gross domestic product to ratchet up to 3 percent after next year’s 2 percent repeat of this year.

“A new Congress will be a factor in that change, ushering in the possibility of less partisanship and bickering,” he said. “Such a shift will free investment to take off and, in turn, produce good job and income growth in 2015.”

JOB GROWTH OR JOB SHRINK?

In the labor department survey of employers for the Augusta metro area, the data shows 1.5 percent job growth.

  • In January: 213,200 employed
  • In August: 216,600 employed

In the labor survey of households, the data shows 0.4 percent job loss.

  • In January: 241,600 employed
  • In August: 240,600 employed

The difference: The survey of households tends to count self-employed, which is why the number of people with jobs is higher than the survey of businesses.

Note: Because of the government shutdown, data for September and October are unavailable until next week.

Source: Georgia Department of Labor Workforce Statistics & Economic Research

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Riverman1
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Riverman1 11/20/13 - 02:51 pm
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Somebody show this to Azziz

Somebody show this to Azziz. The metro area economy is improving and it's growing. That's the base of GRU.

dichotomy
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dichotomy 11/20/13 - 04:08 pm
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Well wait a minute. "Note:

Well wait a minute.

"Note: Because of the government shutdown, data for September and October are unavailable until next week."

So these numbers are not worth the paper they are written on. This is more like an Obama administration unemployment report right before the 2012 election. I think I will wait for the "adjusted" numbers.

countyman
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countyman 11/20/13 - 10:03 pm
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West Augusta

The new mixed-use development at Walton Way Extension/I-20 should try attracting retailers like J Crew, Brooks Brothers, and Crate & Barrel.

The Augusta Exchange is one of the richest areas in the CSRA and offers the perfect demographics.

Gage Creed
22365
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Gage Creed 11/20/13 - 09:12 pm
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I wonder why there is so much

I wonder why there is so much empty retail in the shopping center across from Cheddars... You know perfect demographics and all..

countyman
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countyman 11/20/13 - 10:02 pm
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4
Augusta Exchange= first edge city

The Walton's Corner property includes both retail and office..

Why did the first Carolina Ale, Buffalo Wild Wings, Tutti Frutti, Tin Drum Asia Cafe, Jimmy Johns, Cheddars, and Which Wich in the metro come to the Exchange?

LeConteSkier
636
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LeConteSkier 11/20/13 - 10:55 pm
2
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Actually Cage Greed, there is

Actually Cage Greed, there is not any empty retail across from Cheddars. The Waltons Corner shopping center is FULL. The old old Winn Dixie (before the one at Augusta Exchange opened) is offices. It is mixed with retail and offices but very few if any vacancies in that area. The economy has been bad and Augusta STILL continues to attract retailers and the only major retailers that have closed are the mainly the ones that have completely gone out of business.

Gage Creed
22365
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Gage Creed 11/21/13 - 12:03 am
3
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FACTS are pesky things!

http://www.bccommercial.com/projects/26-walton-s-corner

Actually CeSonteLkier... you may want to review the B&C website... It appears there is space for lease... and judging from the parking lot it's a good deal of space.

Which Wich is not in the Exchange...it's nearly a mile away..

countyman
23353
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countyman 11/21/13 - 12:35 am
2
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Facts

I think should have clicked on the PDF link instead of concentrating on the words 'space available for lease'. The entire development is 53,000 SF and the only space for lease is a small 1,800 SF property.

Walton's Corner is not apart of the Augusta Exchange either..

Gage Creed
22365
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Gage Creed 11/21/13 - 12:33 am
3
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FACTS are pesky things!

Is the center full or not?

I can agree that WC is not the Augusta Exchange, but then neither is Cheddars, Buffalo Wild Wings, etc....

countyman
23353
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countyman 11/21/13 - 01:19 am
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Facts!

Their apart of the Augusta Exchange 'area' which puts them near the perfect demographics.

ColCo
1177
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ColCo 11/21/13 - 06:52 am
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Misquote

The headline reads:Forecast: Georgia, Augusta poised for growth in 2014

The quote from the article reads: “We could be poised for a takeoff in growth,”

I could be a lottery winner, I could be a NASCAR driver, I could be the next winner of the Masters. More poetic license taken by the staffers at the Chronicle.

Dixieman
22202
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Dixieman 11/21/13 - 07:14 am
6
1
Yes indeedy --

Augusta is the city of the future -- and it always will be.

seenitB4
123751
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seenitB4 11/21/13 - 10:38 am
2
0
Someday & some how

You are just poised...getting ready....it will come...on the horizon....in the near future....,at one time....etc.

soapy_725
45206
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soapy_725 11/21/13 - 10:49 am
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William Bartram predicted ARC would be the Mecca of the South
Unpublished

William Bartram predicted ARC would be the Mecca of the South

soapy_725
45206
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soapy_725 11/21/13 - 10:51 am
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ARC--the center for federal income tax redistribution
Unpublished

ARC--the center for federal income tax redistribution

soapy_725
45206
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soapy_725 11/21/13 - 10:51 am
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ARC. Never a mill village. Always a government reservation.
Unpublished

ARC. Never a mill village. Always a government reservation.

countyman
23353
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countyman 11/21/13 - 12:04 pm
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Growth

I predict the growth will bring Trader Joes, Chipotle, REI, Dave & Busters, Anthropologie, etc to Augusta in the near future..

Gage Creed
22365
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Gage Creed 11/21/13 - 08:19 pm
1
0
FACTS are pesky things!

Some people always almost practically never get things near right...

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