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Trends Affecting California's Economy
Vol. 6 Issue 4 - February 25, 2016
Our HeadLines e-news service provides HdL clients with the most up-to-date information on trends affecting California's economy and is meant to provide you with insight and support in your budget preparation and economic planning. 
 
IN THIS ISSUE:States Set Up Fight Over Web Sales
Joe Garrett, Alabama’s deputy revenue commissioner, wants his state to get sued—and the sooner, the better.  Mr. Garrett and like-minded officials in South Dakota, Utah and 10 other states are tired of waiting for Congress to write national rules to let them collect sales taxes from out-of-state Internet retailers. So, in a loosely coordinated effort, they are moving to impose those taxes themselves and daring merchants to challenge them. Read More

California 2016 Store Closings
More than two dozen retail store locations of major U.S. retail chain will be closing their doors for the last time in the state of California this week.  Before the first month of the 2016 calendar year has come to an end, the California retail industry and the California state economy will have suffered significant losses. Judged by sheer volume, the state of California had more Going Out of Business sales than any other state in the 2015 calendar year. Read More

HdL Editorial Note:  The following articles represent different perspectives on current and upcoming economic trends for 2016. 

From High to Low End, The Consumer's in Hiding
First Wal-Mart, then Nordstrom, and now Macy's. As more retailers reveal their fourth quarter 2015 sales and 2016 forecast, it's getting harder to identify pockets of strength in consumer spending. While many investors had been hoping low gas prices and a series of minimum-wage increases would place the low-end consumer in a position of relative strength, Wal-Mart's fourth-quarter revenue decline and reduced 2016 outlook raised concerns that these economic trends might not be enough to stimulate spending. Read More

Walmart Says Its Sales Growth Slowed and Offers Gloomier Outlook for 2016
Walmart reported slower sales growth at its U.S. stores during the holiday quarter. And that at least keeps a streak going.  The 0.6 percent increase in sales at U.S. stores open more than a year marks the chain’s sixth straight three-month period of growth after a long run of decreases.  And yet the gain is a relatively modest one, especially compared to the 1.5 percent growth it experienced in the same period last year, underscoring the challenges Walmart is facing as it tries to win over customers with cleaner, better-stocked stores and a more competitive digital offering. Read More

California Economy is Poised to Grow in 2016 and 2017
Employers in Los Angeles and the rest of California will keep hiring in the next two years but at a slightly slower pace than in 2015, a new report said.  The state is poised to add more than 650,000 jobs this year and next, pushing down the current unemployment rate to about 5.5 percent by 2017, according to an annual forecast released by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp.  After climbing 3 percent in 2015, nonfarm jobs are expected to rise 2.4 percent this year and 1.6 percent in 2017, the report said.  Read More

NRF Forecasts Retail Sales to Grow 3.1 Percent in 2016
The National Retail Federation released its 2016 economic forecast, projecting retail industry sales (which exclude automobiles, gas stations and restaurants) will grow 3.1 percent, higher than the 10-year average of 2.7 percent. NRF also announced it expects non-store sales in 2016 to grow between 6 and 9 percent. “Wage stagnation is easing, jobs are being created and consumer confidence remains steady, so despite the headwinds our economy faces from international developments, we think 2016 will be favorable for growth in the retail industry,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay.  Read More
 

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HdL provides relevant information and analysis on the economic forces affecting local government agencies.  We serve over 400 cities, counties and districts in California and across the nation.  Our allocation audits and software help our clients maximize their revenues.
 
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To view past issues of HeadLines,
click the link below:
Vol. 6 Issue 1 January 7, 2016
Vol. 6 Issue 2 January 28, 2016
Vol. 6 Issue 3 February 11, 2016


 

By The Numbers

Percent of change from one year ago.

CALIFORNIA DATA 

Ports (January):
Containers*
Imported  49.26%
Exported  8.90%
*Many year ago shipments were diverted to other ports.

Airport Traffic (December)
Passengers
Domestic   6.38%
International    9.86%

Unemployment Rate:
December 2015  5.8%
December 2014  7.1%
 


 
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