There are mixed signals in the regional economy, senior economist James Clary of the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission staff said.
In a recent report, Clary said that generally a majority of economic indicators will move in concert as the economy either expands or contracts. However, this region’s indicators have continued to deliver mixed messages throughout the economic recovery of the past several years.
For example, last fall the unemployment data showed an expanding labor force, but initial unemployment claims in the region continued to fall despite layoffs at several major shipyards. A few months before, employment and retail sales grew, Clary said, while unemployment languished.
Clary said that these mixed messages suggest that the Hampton Roads economy will continue to recover slowly through the first six months of 2016. Another factor to consider, Clary said, is that while national employment remains strong Gross Domestic Product growth has slowed down, which...
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