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​The latest issue of SCAG's Spotlight E-Newsletter is now available.

Ventura County suffered a significant recession in 2016, capping off a three-year period of weak economic activity worse than the financial crisis of 2008, a new report shows.

The report, by economist Matthew Fienup, director of the Center for Economic Research and Forecasting, said that while the county has finally recovered the number of jobs lost from 2008-2011, the new positions don’t pay as well nor have they kept pace with the county’s population growth.

Ventura County’s economy, as measured in gross domestic product, shrunk by nearly 3 percent in 2016, led by a loss of nearly $1 billion in non-durable manufacturing (such as the biotech sector). The figure might be revised "but it is reasonable to conclude that Ventura County suffered a significant recession in 2016 and the county saw nearly no growth in either 2014 or 2015."

Download the full press release here.

Keywords : economy

The Inland Empire is fast approaching 300,000 jobs created since 2011, led by continued strong gains in logistics, health care and construction, a new report shows.

The analysis, by Inland Empire economist John Husing, shows that by year’s end, San Bernardino and Riverside counties will have more than doubled the 140,650 jobs lost during the economic meltdown of 2008-2011. By the time 2018 arrives, the I.E. likely will have added 292,496 jobs since 2011.

"Looking at the rest of 2017, there is every reason to anticipate growth levels will be sustained given the forces impacting the key sectors that make up the inland region’s economic base," said Husing, who prepared the report for the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG).

Download the full press release here.

Keywords : economy

Orange County is leading Southern California’s transformation to an innovation economy, drawing high-tech startups like a magnet and creating opportunities for entrepreneurs and an increasingly diverse workforce, a new study shows.

The analysis, by economist Wallace Walrod of the Orange County Business Council, paints a largely positive picture of the OC’s business climate, workforce opportunities and economic outlook, particularly with regard to emerging industries.

"Orange County’s highly educated population is one of its primary competitive advantages. This deep talent pool supports innovation, industry cluster formation and expansion, and overall economic growth," said Walrod, who prepared the report for the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG).

Download the full press release here.

Keywords : economy

Innovation and disruption will drive Los Angeles County’s economy in the foreseeable future, led by advanced transportation, biosciences and digital media, a new report shows.

The study, by the Institute for Applied Economics at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. (LAEDC), projects county employment to grow by 133,000 jobs in the next five years – creating a tighter labor market that should force wages up.

Unfortunately, the report noted, the highest number of overall openings will be found in those occupations that require a high school diploma or less, and which pay less than the county’s median annual wage of $40,260.

"Although jobs are being added, the distribution of jobs will continue to be a cause for concern to our continued economic growth and prosperity," according to the report, prepared for the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG).

Download the full press release here.

Keywords : economy
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