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ECONOMIC OUTLOOK 2024
A PRESENTATION TO THE CHAMBER for a GREATER
CHAPEL HILL-CARRBORO
Dr. Michael L. Walden, Reynolds Distinguished Professor Emeritus
North Carolina State University
REVIEW OF THE COVID RECESSION
RESULTED FROM NATIONWIDE SHUT-DOWN POLICIES
14% UNEMPLOYMENT
ECONOMY (GDP) DROPPED 33% ON ANNUALIZED BASIS
GOOD NEWS – SHORT LIVED – REBOUND BEGAN IN MAY 2020
GOOD NEWS – ECONOMY HAS RECOVERED
MOST MAJOR MEASURES ARE NEAR OR BEYOND PRE-COVID LEVELS
* TOTAL JOBS ABOVE PRE-PANDEMIC LEVEL
* UNEMPLOYMENT RATE UNDER 4%
* LABOR FORCE PARTICIPATION RATE INCREASING
* ECONOMY HAS BEEN GROWING
QUARTERLY REAL GDP GROWTH RATE, 2018-23
EMPLOYMENT TRENDS, 2003-2023
LABOR FORCE PARTICIPATION RATE, 2003-23
HOWEVER, AN IMPORTANT LAGGING INDICATOR
REPORTS USE “FALLING INFLATION” INSTEAD
OF ”FALLING INFLATION RATE”
PRICES HAVE RISEN FASTER THAN EARNINGS
UNTIL RECENTLY
920
930
940
950
960
970
980
990
1000
1010
1020
Jan-19
Mar-19
May-19
Jul-19
Sep-19
Nov-19
Jan-20
Mar-20
May-20
Jul-20
Sep-20
Nov-20
Jan-21
Mar-21
May-21
Jul-21
Sep-21
Nov-21
Jan-22
Mar-22
May-22
Jul-22
Sep-22
Nov-22
Jan-23
Mar-23
May-23
Jul-23
Sep-23
Nov-23
Real Weekly Earnings
GOOD NEWS: INFLATION HAS MODERATED
2.4% IN 2019, 7% IN 2022, NOW 3% TO 4% (all year-over-year)
BUT NOTE: MEANS AVERAGE RATE OF PRICE INCREASES HAVE
SLOWED; NOT THAT AVERAGE PRICES ARE FALLING
YEAR-OVER-YEAR CPI % CHANGE
HOW DOES LOCAL ECONOMY COMPARE
US NC DURHAM-CHAPEL HILL
JOB GROWTH, 4/20-12/23 21% 20% 19%
JOBLESS RATE 4-20/1-24 14.8%/3.7% 14.2%/3.5% 10.4%/2.8%
REAL WEEKLY EARNINGS
1/21 – 12/23 -4.3% -3.0% 10.7%
CONSUMER SPENDING IS SLOWING
FEDERAL FUNDS RATE, 1955-2023
JOB GROWTH IS ALSO SLOWING
 AVERAGE MONTHLY NET JOB GAIN
 2ND HALF, 2020: 1,346,000
 2021: 667,000
 2022: 369,000
 2023 , JAN-DEC: 201,750
WHAT’S THE WORRY?
THAT FED’S EFFORTS WILL CAUSE A RECESSION
RECESSION IS A “BROAD BASED DECLINE IN ECONOMIC ACTIVITY
FOR A SUSTAINED PERIOD OF TIME”
RECESSIONS ARE COMMON WHEN FED RAISES INTEREST RATES
BUT RECESSION DID NOT HAPPEN IN 2023
FED IS ALSO REDUCING THE MONEY SUPPLY
(M2 MONEY SUPPLY ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION)
2024 WILL BE A YEAR OF TWO ECONOMIES
FIRST HALF
FED KEEPS INTEREST RATES HIGH
ECONOMY SLOWS MORE
GROWTH MAY BE NEGATIVE
JOBLESS RATE RISES TO 5%
SECOND HALF
FED REDUCES INTEREST RATES
GROWTH REVIVES
GROWTH RATE RETURNS TO 2%
JOBLESS RATE DROPS TO 3.5%
SOFT LANDINGS HAVE BEEN RARE
THERE HAVE BEEN
12 RECESSIONS
SINCE WORLD WAR II
THERE HAS BEEN ONLY
1 SOFT LANDING
SINCE WORLD WAR II
CONSUMER SPENDING CARRIES THE ECONOMY
SUPPORTED BY COVID STIMULUS
PROGRAMS AND
“PENT-UP DEMAND” AFTER THE
PANDEMIC;
CONSUMER SPENDING HAS BEEN
SURPRISINGLY STRONG
BUT NOW COVID SAVINGS ARE GONE,
AND BOTH CREDIT CARD DEBT AND INTEREST RATES ARE UP
HOW WILL NORTH CAROLINA AND THE TRIANGLE DO?
LOOK AT PREVIOUS RECESSIONS
% JOB LOSS DURING RECESSION
2008-2010 RECESSION 2020 RECESSION
US -6.2% -14.2%
NC -8.1% -12.2%
RALEIGH-CARY METRO -6.2% -12.2%
DURHAM-CH METRO -5.2% -10.3%
WHAT SECTORS WILL BE MOST IMPACTED
FROM A SLOWDOWN?
COMMERICAL REAL ESTATE
FINANCIAL SERVICES
MANUFCTURING
RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE
BIG ISSUE #2: SOCIAL SECURITY
ESTIMATED THAT BY 2033 WILL ONLY BE ABLE TO PAY 75% OF
WHAT PROMISED
GETS WORSE AS TIME PROGRESSES
LOOK FOR A COMMISSION IN EARLY 2030’S TO ADDRESS THE
PROBLEM
NEW BOOK AVAILABLE NOW:
“THE 60 MINUTE INVESTMENT GUIDE”
A CASE FOR DURHAM/CHAPEL HILL METRO
BEING POISED FOR FURTHER GROWTH
LABOR FORCE
EDUCATION
TRANSPORTATION ACCESS
LOWER COST OF LIVING COMPARED TO
COMPARABLE METROS
EXCITEMENT !!
THE FEDERAL RESERVE IS KEY TO INFLATION
 MOVING THE PUNCH BOWL
 CONTROL OVER INTEREST RATES AND MONEY SUPPLY
 DURING COVID, PUSHED INTEREST RATES TO RECORD
LOWS AND MONEY TO RECORD HIGHS TO ENCOURAGE
SPENDING
 NOW, FED HAS PUSHED INTEREST RATES UP AND REDUCED
MONEY SUPPLY TO SLOW SPENDING AND TAKE PRESSURE
OFF PRICES
BIG ISSUE #1: NATIONAL DEBT
PUTS UPWARD PRESSURE ON INTEREST RATES
CROWDS OUT PRIVATE BORROWING
ONE APPROACH: DIVIDE FEDERAL SPENDING INTO
A “CURRENT BUDGET” AND “CAPITAL BUDGET”
FEDERAL RESERVE IS TRYING TO ACHIEVE A “SOFT LANDING”
MEANING REDUCE INFLATION RATE WITHOUT A RECESSION
The 2024
Economic Forecast Forum
presented by
The Chamber’s
14th Annual Economic
Conditions Survey
February 2024
Diverse, Representative, and
Consistent Respondents
*234 Responses
How many people do you employ locally? (Full and part-time)
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
5%
14%
22%
15%
16%
6%
13%
5%
0
1-3
4-10
11-25
26-50
51-100
101-500
500+
Respondents by Industry Type
32
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
35
33
31
21
19
16
13
12
9
7
6
6
5
5
5
4
2
1
1
Non-Profit/Social Services
Real Estate/Rental/Leasing
Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.)
Food Service & Drinking Places
Construction/Manufacturing
Arts, Entertainment and Recrecation
Healthcare
Government/Public Sector
Education
Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.)
Retail
Utilities
Accommodations
Communications
Information Technology
Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.)
Transportation
Agriculture
Research & Development
234 Total
Respondents
Where respondents’ businesses are located (checked all that apply)
33
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
193
49
33
33
17
16
Orange County
Durham County
Chatham County
Wake County
Other
Alamance County
160
53
39
30
26
24
16
12
8
Chapel Hill
Carrboro
Durham
Hillsborough
Raleigh
Other
Pittsboro
Mebane
Unincorporated
How are local
businesses doing?
Strengthening Economic
Expectations
Which best describes your organization's current financial
condition?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
21%
56%
21%
1%
Strong/Growing/Optimistic
Steady/Stable/Confident
Tight/Slow/Concerned
Weak/Worried/Pessimistic
Negative Impacts Continue Decline
37
56% (2009)
2%
(2019)
32%
(2021)
10%
(2024)
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
2008 2009 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024
Negatively
“How is the current state of the economy affecting your organization?” Percent
responding ‘negatively,’ with a score of 1, 2, or 3 on a 1-10 scale
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
Positive Impacts of Economy Tick Up
38
“How is the current state of the economy affecting your organization?” Percent
responding ‘positively,’ with a score of 7, 8, 9 or 10 on a 1-10 scale
5%
(2009)
73% (2018)
28%
(2021)
39%
(2024)
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
80%
2008 2009 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024
Positively
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
How is the Current State of the Economy Affecting
Your Organization?
39
10%
51%
39%
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
80%
90%
100%
2009 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024
Negatively Not Much Positively
Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
How do you expect your organization's financial condition will
change over the next 12 months?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
38%
58%
4%
Better/Stronger
Steady/About the Same
Weaker/Worse
What do you need most in order to thrive in 2024?
Shuffling Sector
Perspectives
7.5
7.0
6.7
6.5
6.0
6.0
5.9
5.7
5.4
5.3
5.0
5.0
5.0
4.9
4.7
4.7
3.0
2.0
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Real Estate/Rental/Leasing
Construction/Manufacturing
Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.)
Transportation
Non-Profit/Social Services
Religious Institution
Arts, Entertainment and Recrecation
AVERAGE
Government/Public Sector
Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.)
Education
Healthcare
Retail
Food Service & Drinking Places
Communications
Utilities
Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.)
Accommodations
How is current state of the economy affecting your
organization? (February 2022)
1 = Very Negatively
5 = Neutral
10 = Very Positively
Feb 2022 Chamber Member Survey
7.8
6.6
6.2
6.2
6.1
6.0
6.0
5.8
5.7
5.5
5.5
5.5
5.4
5.0
4.9
4.3
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Communications
Accommodations
Government/Public Sector
Education
Arts, Entertainment, Recreation
Construction + Manufacturing
Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.)
Utilities
AVERAGE
Retail
Nonprofit/Social Services
Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.)
Real Estate/Rental/Leasing
Food Service & Drinking Places
Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.)
Healthcare
How is current state of the economy affecting
your organization? (February 2023)
1 = Very Negatively
5 = Neutral
10 = Very Positively
Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
7.0
6.8
6.4
6.4
6.3
6.2
6.2
6.0
5.9
5.9
5.8
5.7
5.6
5.6
5.2
5.0
5.0
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Accommodations
Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.)
Construction/Manufacturing
Real Estate/Rental/Leasing
Government/Public Sector
Information Technology
Retail
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation
Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.)
AVERAGE
Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.)
Healthcare
Communications
Education
Non-Profit/Social Services
Food Service & Drinking Places
Utilities
How is current state of the economy affecting your
organization? (February 2024)
1 = Very Negatively
5 = Neutral
10 = Very Positively
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
Cautious Revenue Optimism
How do you expect your organization’s sales/revenue to
change over the next 12 months?
65%
28%
4%
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
Increase No Change Decrease
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
How do you expect your organization’s sales/revenue to change
over the next 12 months?
69%
80% 76%
65%
28%
5%
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
80%
90%
2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024
Increase No Change Decrease
<2% Unsure
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
What is the most significant challenge your future growth?
Hiring Challenges
Remain Consistent
Do you expect the size of your workforce to change in
the next 12 months (2023)?
Feb 2022 Chamber Member Survey
52%
3%
45%
We plan to add workers
We plan to reduce our
workforce
We expect total workforce
to stay roughly the same
Do you expect the size of your workforce to change in
the next 12 months (2024)?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
39%
3%
58%
We plan to add workers
We plan to reduce our
workforce
We expect total workforce
to stay roughly the same
Percentage Planning to Add Workers in 2024 Down From 2022
Peak
36%
30%
54%
68%
52%
39%
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
80%
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
“Does your organization have plans to increase or reduce its workforce in the next 12 months?”
Has your organization experienced hiring challenges over the
past 12 months?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
72%
28%
Experiencing hiring
challenges
Not experiencing hiring
challenges
Has your organization experienced hiring challenges over the
past 12 months?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
27%
20%
25%
28%
Yes, hiring is one of our
biggest challenges
Yes, hiring feels harder
lately
Somewhat, but hiring is not
hurting our operation
No, we do not have hiring
challenges
Which factors contribute to your hiring challenges? (check all that apply)
56
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
28%
16%
15%
30%
43%
Limited housing supply/cost of
housing
Limited transportation
options/cost of transportation
Limited childcare availability/cost
of childcare
We do not have hiring challenges
Other
“Other” Factors - Two Sides of the Same
Coin?
Salary Competition (27)
“Staying competitive with triangle area salaries.”
“Finding qualified candidates at the price point we are promoting.”
“The salary demands (even with a lack of experience) is nearly 50-75% higher than it was 3 years
ago. It is making it incredibly difficult to pay expected wages and turn a profit.”
Available/Qualified Candidates (51)
“The pool of qualified employees is very limited.”
"Lack of professionalism from job applicants/not showing up for interviews.”
“Lack of specific talent close enough to Chapel Hill to support our needs.”
“We are looking for young talent that seem to prefer larger cities with more amenities.”
Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
Other Responses
Costs (6)
“Everyone wants to live in Raleigh, people can't afford to live in Chapel Hill.”
Industry Specific (8)
“Real Estate professionals not moving firms at the same rate.”
"The negative depiction of profession portrayed by our media.”
“Not many are studying the profession of accounting.”
Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
Remote Work (4)
“Workforce who are required to be onsite and in-person versus many industries that have resorted
to virtual schedules”
Inflation Expectations Persist,
Intensity Abates
How do you expect prices YOU PAY for goods/services to change
over the next 12 months?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
12%
64%
20%
1% 3%
Increase Significantly
Increase Somewhat
Stay About the Same
Decrease
Not Sure
Do you expect to increase prices YOU CHARGE for goods/services
over the next 12 months?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
39%
51%
0%
9%
Yes, we expect to raise our
prices
No, our prices will stay
about the same
No, we expect to cut our
prices
Not Sure
Government Sentiment
Relatively Strong
Would you say local government here is:
63
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
18%
61%
18%
2%
Strongly Pro-Business
Somewhat Pro-Business
Somewhat Anti-Business
Very Anti-Business
232 respondents
Would you say local government here is:
64
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
22%
59%
16%
3%
Strongly Pro-Business
Somewhat Pro-Business
Somewhat Anti-Business
Very Anti-Business
134 respondents with Chapel Hill-based businesses
Would you say local government here is:
65
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
15%
57%
28%
0%
Strongly Pro-Business
Somewhat Pro-Business
Somewhat Anti-Business
Very Anti-Business
46 respondents with Carrboro-based businesses
Artificial Intelligence
Over the past 12 months, did your business incorporate artificial
intelligence (AI) tools into normal operations?
Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
28%
63%
9%
Yes
No
Not Sure

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2024 Economic Forecast Forum Presentation

  • 1. ECONOMIC OUTLOOK 2024 A PRESENTATION TO THE CHAMBER for a GREATER CHAPEL HILL-CARRBORO Dr. Michael L. Walden, Reynolds Distinguished Professor Emeritus North Carolina State University
  • 2. REVIEW OF THE COVID RECESSION RESULTED FROM NATIONWIDE SHUT-DOWN POLICIES 14% UNEMPLOYMENT ECONOMY (GDP) DROPPED 33% ON ANNUALIZED BASIS GOOD NEWS – SHORT LIVED – REBOUND BEGAN IN MAY 2020
  • 3. GOOD NEWS – ECONOMY HAS RECOVERED MOST MAJOR MEASURES ARE NEAR OR BEYOND PRE-COVID LEVELS * TOTAL JOBS ABOVE PRE-PANDEMIC LEVEL * UNEMPLOYMENT RATE UNDER 4% * LABOR FORCE PARTICIPATION RATE INCREASING * ECONOMY HAS BEEN GROWING
  • 4. QUARTERLY REAL GDP GROWTH RATE, 2018-23
  • 7. HOWEVER, AN IMPORTANT LAGGING INDICATOR REPORTS USE “FALLING INFLATION” INSTEAD OF ”FALLING INFLATION RATE” PRICES HAVE RISEN FASTER THAN EARNINGS UNTIL RECENTLY 920 930 940 950 960 970 980 990 1000 1010 1020 Jan-19 Mar-19 May-19 Jul-19 Sep-19 Nov-19 Jan-20 Mar-20 May-20 Jul-20 Sep-20 Nov-20 Jan-21 Mar-21 May-21 Jul-21 Sep-21 Nov-21 Jan-22 Mar-22 May-22 Jul-22 Sep-22 Nov-22 Jan-23 Mar-23 May-23 Jul-23 Sep-23 Nov-23 Real Weekly Earnings
  • 8. GOOD NEWS: INFLATION HAS MODERATED 2.4% IN 2019, 7% IN 2022, NOW 3% TO 4% (all year-over-year) BUT NOTE: MEANS AVERAGE RATE OF PRICE INCREASES HAVE SLOWED; NOT THAT AVERAGE PRICES ARE FALLING
  • 10. HOW DOES LOCAL ECONOMY COMPARE US NC DURHAM-CHAPEL HILL JOB GROWTH, 4/20-12/23 21% 20% 19% JOBLESS RATE 4-20/1-24 14.8%/3.7% 14.2%/3.5% 10.4%/2.8% REAL WEEKLY EARNINGS 1/21 – 12/23 -4.3% -3.0% 10.7%
  • 12. FEDERAL FUNDS RATE, 1955-2023
  • 13. JOB GROWTH IS ALSO SLOWING  AVERAGE MONTHLY NET JOB GAIN  2ND HALF, 2020: 1,346,000  2021: 667,000  2022: 369,000  2023 , JAN-DEC: 201,750
  • 14. WHAT’S THE WORRY? THAT FED’S EFFORTS WILL CAUSE A RECESSION RECESSION IS A “BROAD BASED DECLINE IN ECONOMIC ACTIVITY FOR A SUSTAINED PERIOD OF TIME” RECESSIONS ARE COMMON WHEN FED RAISES INTEREST RATES BUT RECESSION DID NOT HAPPEN IN 2023
  • 15. FED IS ALSO REDUCING THE MONEY SUPPLY (M2 MONEY SUPPLY ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION)
  • 16. 2024 WILL BE A YEAR OF TWO ECONOMIES FIRST HALF FED KEEPS INTEREST RATES HIGH ECONOMY SLOWS MORE GROWTH MAY BE NEGATIVE JOBLESS RATE RISES TO 5% SECOND HALF FED REDUCES INTEREST RATES GROWTH REVIVES GROWTH RATE RETURNS TO 2% JOBLESS RATE DROPS TO 3.5%
  • 17. SOFT LANDINGS HAVE BEEN RARE THERE HAVE BEEN 12 RECESSIONS SINCE WORLD WAR II THERE HAS BEEN ONLY 1 SOFT LANDING SINCE WORLD WAR II
  • 18. CONSUMER SPENDING CARRIES THE ECONOMY SUPPORTED BY COVID STIMULUS PROGRAMS AND “PENT-UP DEMAND” AFTER THE PANDEMIC; CONSUMER SPENDING HAS BEEN SURPRISINGLY STRONG
  • 19. BUT NOW COVID SAVINGS ARE GONE, AND BOTH CREDIT CARD DEBT AND INTEREST RATES ARE UP
  • 20. HOW WILL NORTH CAROLINA AND THE TRIANGLE DO? LOOK AT PREVIOUS RECESSIONS % JOB LOSS DURING RECESSION 2008-2010 RECESSION 2020 RECESSION US -6.2% -14.2% NC -8.1% -12.2% RALEIGH-CARY METRO -6.2% -12.2% DURHAM-CH METRO -5.2% -10.3%
  • 21. WHAT SECTORS WILL BE MOST IMPACTED FROM A SLOWDOWN? COMMERICAL REAL ESTATE FINANCIAL SERVICES MANUFCTURING RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE
  • 22. BIG ISSUE #2: SOCIAL SECURITY ESTIMATED THAT BY 2033 WILL ONLY BE ABLE TO PAY 75% OF WHAT PROMISED GETS WORSE AS TIME PROGRESSES LOOK FOR A COMMISSION IN EARLY 2030’S TO ADDRESS THE PROBLEM
  • 23. NEW BOOK AVAILABLE NOW: “THE 60 MINUTE INVESTMENT GUIDE”
  • 24. A CASE FOR DURHAM/CHAPEL HILL METRO BEING POISED FOR FURTHER GROWTH LABOR FORCE EDUCATION TRANSPORTATION ACCESS LOWER COST OF LIVING COMPARED TO COMPARABLE METROS EXCITEMENT !!
  • 25. THE FEDERAL RESERVE IS KEY TO INFLATION  MOVING THE PUNCH BOWL  CONTROL OVER INTEREST RATES AND MONEY SUPPLY  DURING COVID, PUSHED INTEREST RATES TO RECORD LOWS AND MONEY TO RECORD HIGHS TO ENCOURAGE SPENDING  NOW, FED HAS PUSHED INTEREST RATES UP AND REDUCED MONEY SUPPLY TO SLOW SPENDING AND TAKE PRESSURE OFF PRICES
  • 26. BIG ISSUE #1: NATIONAL DEBT PUTS UPWARD PRESSURE ON INTEREST RATES CROWDS OUT PRIVATE BORROWING ONE APPROACH: DIVIDE FEDERAL SPENDING INTO A “CURRENT BUDGET” AND “CAPITAL BUDGET”
  • 27. FEDERAL RESERVE IS TRYING TO ACHIEVE A “SOFT LANDING” MEANING REDUCE INFLATION RATE WITHOUT A RECESSION
  • 28. The 2024 Economic Forecast Forum presented by
  • 29. The Chamber’s 14th Annual Economic Conditions Survey February 2024
  • 30. Diverse, Representative, and Consistent Respondents *234 Responses
  • 31. How many people do you employ locally? (Full and part-time) Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 5% 14% 22% 15% 16% 6% 13% 5% 0 1-3 4-10 11-25 26-50 51-100 101-500 500+
  • 32. Respondents by Industry Type 32 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 35 33 31 21 19 16 13 12 9 7 6 6 5 5 5 4 2 1 1 Non-Profit/Social Services Real Estate/Rental/Leasing Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.) Food Service & Drinking Places Construction/Manufacturing Arts, Entertainment and Recrecation Healthcare Government/Public Sector Education Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.) Retail Utilities Accommodations Communications Information Technology Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.) Transportation Agriculture Research & Development 234 Total Respondents
  • 33. Where respondents’ businesses are located (checked all that apply) 33 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 193 49 33 33 17 16 Orange County Durham County Chatham County Wake County Other Alamance County 160 53 39 30 26 24 16 12 8 Chapel Hill Carrboro Durham Hillsborough Raleigh Other Pittsboro Mebane Unincorporated
  • 36. Which best describes your organization's current financial condition? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 21% 56% 21% 1% Strong/Growing/Optimistic Steady/Stable/Confident Tight/Slow/Concerned Weak/Worried/Pessimistic
  • 37. Negative Impacts Continue Decline 37 56% (2009) 2% (2019) 32% (2021) 10% (2024) 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 2008 2009 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Negatively “How is the current state of the economy affecting your organization?” Percent responding ‘negatively,’ with a score of 1, 2, or 3 on a 1-10 scale Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
  • 38. Positive Impacts of Economy Tick Up 38 “How is the current state of the economy affecting your organization?” Percent responding ‘positively,’ with a score of 7, 8, 9 or 10 on a 1-10 scale 5% (2009) 73% (2018) 28% (2021) 39% (2024) 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 2008 2009 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Positively Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
  • 39. How is the Current State of the Economy Affecting Your Organization? 39 10% 51% 39% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 2009 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Negatively Not Much Positively Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
  • 40. How do you expect your organization's financial condition will change over the next 12 months? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 38% 58% 4% Better/Stronger Steady/About the Same Weaker/Worse
  • 41. What do you need most in order to thrive in 2024?
  • 43. 7.5 7.0 6.7 6.5 6.0 6.0 5.9 5.7 5.4 5.3 5.0 5.0 5.0 4.9 4.7 4.7 3.0 2.0 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Real Estate/Rental/Leasing Construction/Manufacturing Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.) Transportation Non-Profit/Social Services Religious Institution Arts, Entertainment and Recrecation AVERAGE Government/Public Sector Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.) Education Healthcare Retail Food Service & Drinking Places Communications Utilities Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.) Accommodations How is current state of the economy affecting your organization? (February 2022) 1 = Very Negatively 5 = Neutral 10 = Very Positively Feb 2022 Chamber Member Survey
  • 44. 7.8 6.6 6.2 6.2 6.1 6.0 6.0 5.8 5.7 5.5 5.5 5.5 5.4 5.0 4.9 4.3 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Communications Accommodations Government/Public Sector Education Arts, Entertainment, Recreation Construction + Manufacturing Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.) Utilities AVERAGE Retail Nonprofit/Social Services Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.) Real Estate/Rental/Leasing Food Service & Drinking Places Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.) Healthcare How is current state of the economy affecting your organization? (February 2023) 1 = Very Negatively 5 = Neutral 10 = Very Positively Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
  • 45. 7.0 6.8 6.4 6.4 6.3 6.2 6.2 6.0 5.9 5.9 5.8 5.7 5.6 5.6 5.2 5.0 5.0 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Accommodations Other Services (HVAC, Mechanic, Plumbing, etc.) Construction/Manufacturing Real Estate/Rental/Leasing Government/Public Sector Information Technology Retail Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Professional Services (Finance, Insurance, Legal, etc.) AVERAGE Personal Services (Hair, Nail, Fitness, etc.) Healthcare Communications Education Non-Profit/Social Services Food Service & Drinking Places Utilities How is current state of the economy affecting your organization? (February 2024) 1 = Very Negatively 5 = Neutral 10 = Very Positively Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
  • 47. How do you expect your organization’s sales/revenue to change over the next 12 months? 65% 28% 4% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% Increase No Change Decrease Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
  • 48. How do you expect your organization’s sales/revenue to change over the next 12 months? 69% 80% 76% 65% 28% 5% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Increase No Change Decrease <2% Unsure Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey
  • 49. What is the most significant challenge your future growth?
  • 51. Do you expect the size of your workforce to change in the next 12 months (2023)? Feb 2022 Chamber Member Survey 52% 3% 45% We plan to add workers We plan to reduce our workforce We expect total workforce to stay roughly the same
  • 52. Do you expect the size of your workforce to change in the next 12 months (2024)? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 39% 3% 58% We plan to add workers We plan to reduce our workforce We expect total workforce to stay roughly the same
  • 53. Percentage Planning to Add Workers in 2024 Down From 2022 Peak 36% 30% 54% 68% 52% 39% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey “Does your organization have plans to increase or reduce its workforce in the next 12 months?”
  • 54. Has your organization experienced hiring challenges over the past 12 months? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 72% 28% Experiencing hiring challenges Not experiencing hiring challenges
  • 55. Has your organization experienced hiring challenges over the past 12 months? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 27% 20% 25% 28% Yes, hiring is one of our biggest challenges Yes, hiring feels harder lately Somewhat, but hiring is not hurting our operation No, we do not have hiring challenges
  • 56. Which factors contribute to your hiring challenges? (check all that apply) 56 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 28% 16% 15% 30% 43% Limited housing supply/cost of housing Limited transportation options/cost of transportation Limited childcare availability/cost of childcare We do not have hiring challenges Other
  • 57. “Other” Factors - Two Sides of the Same Coin? Salary Competition (27) “Staying competitive with triangle area salaries.” “Finding qualified candidates at the price point we are promoting.” “The salary demands (even with a lack of experience) is nearly 50-75% higher than it was 3 years ago. It is making it incredibly difficult to pay expected wages and turn a profit.” Available/Qualified Candidates (51) “The pool of qualified employees is very limited.” "Lack of professionalism from job applicants/not showing up for interviews.” “Lack of specific talent close enough to Chapel Hill to support our needs.” “We are looking for young talent that seem to prefer larger cities with more amenities.” Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey
  • 58. Other Responses Costs (6) “Everyone wants to live in Raleigh, people can't afford to live in Chapel Hill.” Industry Specific (8) “Real Estate professionals not moving firms at the same rate.” "The negative depiction of profession portrayed by our media.” “Not many are studying the profession of accounting.” Feb 2023 Chamber Member Survey Remote Work (4) “Workforce who are required to be onsite and in-person versus many industries that have resorted to virtual schedules”
  • 60. How do you expect prices YOU PAY for goods/services to change over the next 12 months? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 12% 64% 20% 1% 3% Increase Significantly Increase Somewhat Stay About the Same Decrease Not Sure
  • 61. Do you expect to increase prices YOU CHARGE for goods/services over the next 12 months? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 39% 51% 0% 9% Yes, we expect to raise our prices No, our prices will stay about the same No, we expect to cut our prices Not Sure
  • 63. Would you say local government here is: 63 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 18% 61% 18% 2% Strongly Pro-Business Somewhat Pro-Business Somewhat Anti-Business Very Anti-Business 232 respondents
  • 64. Would you say local government here is: 64 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 22% 59% 16% 3% Strongly Pro-Business Somewhat Pro-Business Somewhat Anti-Business Very Anti-Business 134 respondents with Chapel Hill-based businesses
  • 65. Would you say local government here is: 65 Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 15% 57% 28% 0% Strongly Pro-Business Somewhat Pro-Business Somewhat Anti-Business Very Anti-Business 46 respondents with Carrboro-based businesses
  • 67. Over the past 12 months, did your business incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) tools into normal operations? Feb 2024 Chamber Member Survey 28% 63% 9% Yes No Not Sure