North Carolina Economic Survey 1999
ROBERT F. MULLIGAN
College of Business
Western Carolina University
This inaugural edition of the North Carolina Economic Survey examines
and forecasts various indicators of economic performance most important
to the nation and our state. The survey is organized in five sections dealing
with various aspects of predicting regional or national economic performance:
North Carolina Forecast; U.S. Aggregate Output; U.S. Aggregate Consumption,
Saving, and Investment; Employment, Unemployment, and the Labor Market;
and Business Indicators.
The first section presents two North Carolina Forecast articles forecasting
North Carolina gross state product and unemployment for North and South
The second section presents three articles forecasting U.S. Aggregate
Output, which employ several competing approaches to predict GDP. A forecast
of U.S. GDP is provided for as far into the future as 2010. With so many
competing approaches and models, it is not surprising that at least one
forecast predicts a recession in the near future.
The third section presents five articles forecasting U.S. Aggregate
Consumption, Saving, and Investment. These articles predict consumption
and investment from competing perspectives, but are fairly unanimous in
providing a rosy overall outlook. The one cause for concern is a predicted
continuing decline in U.S. personal saving.
The fourth section presents two articles on Employment, Unemployment,
and the Labor Market. These articles predict national unemployment rates
and inflation for the next two years.
The fifth section presents four articles forecasting various Business
Indicators, including housing starts, real estate lending, consumer credit
debt, and Japan's GDP and the dollar-yen exchange rate.
Generally, the forecasts which make up the North Carolina Economic
Survey 1999 point to continued prosperity. Even the increase in consumer
debt is symptomatic of consumer optimism. The prediction of an end to the
recession in Japan is especially promising.
Cullowhee, North Carolina