For this 13th installment of Crystal Ball, MiBiz reporters interviewed dozens of West Michigan executives about their outlook for the state and national economy and the indicators they’re watching as they prepare their businesses for the new year. While no single issue seemed to rise to the top this year, here’s a subjective list of their concerns that came up most often, ranked in no particular order.
A combination of factors came together in 2019 to take a bite out of Michigan’s economy. The six-week General Motors strike, white-collar job cuts at GM and Ford early in 2019, a slowing manufacturing sector, and relatively flat auto sales collectively held back the state’s growth this year.
Michigan retailers reported a dip in sales during June, although they remain optimistic that business will pick up over the next few months, according to a monthly index released last week.
Robert Dye views 2019 as a “transitional year” for the U.S. economy as a trio of forces align to moderate growth during the year.
West Michigan construction industry executives believe some of their recent worker training efforts have started to pay off.
Anchored primarily by growth in manufacturing and services, Michigan continues to outpace other nearby Great Lakes states.