Saturday, May 26, 2018
Business

Tampa Bay's economic recovery looks healthier compared to other metros

Tampa Bay's economy, comparatively speaking, is doing much better these days.

The bay area's economic recovery ranks 30th among the 100 largest metros in the country, with a big drop in its unemployment rate largely responsible for pushing it into the top third.

The news, from a quarterly MetroMonitor analysis by the Brookings Institution, is a far cry from a year ago when Tampa Bay's recovery was among the 20 weakest in the country, held down by posting the third-weakest growth in economic output since hitting its low point here in early 2010.

In surging in the standings, Tampa Bay benefitted from a weaker field, with most cities slowing their rate of recovery between the first quarter and second quarter this year.

The analysis measured the rate of economic recovery, not overall economic strength.

"In the race to recovery, metro areas are running at slow speeds with some tripping along the way," said Alec Friedhoff, a research analyst with Brookings' Metropolitan Policy Program who also was lead MetroMonitor developer.

Employment growth softened in the second quarter across the metro areas. The unemployment rate dropped in about half the metros, but still remained above 6 percent in all but 12. Housing continued its tortured path to recovery, with 87 metro housing markets hitting new lows on prices.

The report tracked the recovery of metros from their recessionary low points in four key areas: change in employment; change in unemployment rate; change in the gross metropolitan product (or economic output); and change in housing prices.

Tampa Bay's stronger performance was driven in part by the fact it posted the ninth best recovery in unemployment among all metros, with its jobless rate dropping from a peak of 12.5 percent down to 9 percent as of June.

However, the analysis doesn't take into account that the area's unemployment rate rose to 9.4 percent in July. Moreover, a recent report by state economists indicated much of the recent drop in unemployment may be overstated. About 91 percent of retraction in the state's unemployment rate since January was due to Floridians dropping out of the workforce and not due to job creation, according to the state report.

Among other yardsticks in the MetroMonitor update, Tampa Bay ranked:

• 14th best recovery in housing prices from their low point.

• 26th best in addition of jobs since the beginning of 2010.

• 70th in economic improvement, with its economic output up 4.5 percent from the low reached at the end of 2009.

Like the rest of the metros, a recent slowdown is evident, however. The bay area's economic output rose just 0.2 percent in the latest quarter.

Jeff Harrington can be reached at (727) 893-8242 or [email protected]

Comments
An American Airlines passenger was refused beer - so he screamed, fought and spit blood, FBI says

An American Airlines passenger was refused beer - so he screamed, fought and spit blood, FBI says

It began, as so many plane debacles seem to, with strange sounds in the bathroom.They were the noises of Jason Felix, one of the passengers on Wednesday’s American Airlines flight out of Saint Croix, according to a FBI affidavit recounting events lea...
Published: 05/26/18
Is the Lightning’s Jeff Vinik the best owner in professional sports?

Is the Lightning’s Jeff Vinik the best owner in professional sports?

Hope of another Stanley Cup has dissolved, and soon the ice will follow. Yet even if sorrow is the price of devotion, the true hockey fans will still buy in when the next season comes around.That concept may not be unique to Tampa Bay, but it does se...
Published: 05/26/18
Five members of 69ers motorcycle gang indicted on federal charges

Five members of 69ers motorcycle gang indicted on federal charges

Last year three members of the 69ers Motorcycle Club gang were implicated in the execution of a rival gang leader in the middle of rush hour traffic in Pasco County.Now those three and two other 69ers members have been indicted on federal charges tha...
Published: 05/25/18
With makeover, ZooTampa at Lowry Park takes a page from the theme parks

With makeover, ZooTampa at Lowry Park takes a page from the theme parks

TAMPA — Behind the construction walls near the carousel at ZooTampa at Lowry Park, hammers, saws and power drills made a racket in the blazing Friday heat. A raft full of 100-pound water jugs took test trips on the new Roaring Springs ride set ...
Published: 05/25/18
U.S. news outlets block European readers over new privacy rules

U.S. news outlets block European readers over new privacy rules

LONDON — U.S. news outlets including The Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, The Orlando Sentinel and The Arizona Daily Star abruptly blocked access to their websites from Europe on Friday, choosing to black out readers rather than comply with a ...
Published: 05/25/18
Tampa Electric appeals OSHA findings for October accident

Tampa Electric appeals OSHA findings for October accident

TAMPA — Tampa Electric Co. is appealing a recent citation by federal regulators. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration hit the utility with a $76,050 fine and a "serious" violation in April following its investigation into an accident in ...
Published: 05/25/18
Fiat Chrysler recalls 4.8 million cars, warning owners: Don’t use the cruise control

Fiat Chrysler recalls 4.8 million cars, warning owners: Don’t use the cruise control

Associated PressDETROIT — Fiat Chrysler is recalling 4.8 million vehicles in the U.S. because in rare but terrifying circumstances, drivers may not be able to turn off the cruise control. The company is warning owners not to use cruise control until...
Published: 05/25/18
Federal Reserve chairman warns his agency must be free from political pressure

Federal Reserve chairman warns his agency must be free from political pressure

Associated PressFederal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell warned Friday that the Fed’s independence from political pressure must be respected if it is to succeed in controlling inflation, maximizing employment and regulating the financial system. His re...
Published: 05/25/18
Restaurants like Ford’s Garage use the experience to get you in the door

Restaurants like Ford’s Garage use the experience to get you in the door

Tim Butler’s first car was a Ford Model A pick-up truck — a pearl fawn and cherry red pick-up he got his senior year in high school from his dad, who renovates antique cars. That’s why as Butler waited for a table at the Ford’...
Published: 05/25/18
St. Petersburg man fined $507,513 in penny stock scheme

St. Petersburg man fined $507,513 in penny stock scheme

TAMPA — A St. Petersburg man was fined $507,513 and permanently barred from participating in the offering of a penny stock in a case involving a scheme to manipulate the price of Aureus, a penny stock company incorporated in Nevada, officials said Fr...
Published: 05/25/18