The Bureau of Business and Economic Research, who bring us the annual Economic Outlook Seminar, provided a midyear economic update with the topic "Montana's Electricity: Adequate for How Long?". This midyear seminar was briefer than the annual seminar, only a 90-minute lunch session, with a few speakers updating attendees on the topic.
"Is the Montana economy still roaring ahead? It has been over the last two years. At the end of fiscal year 2022, collections from the top seven taxes were up by a stunning 39% from the previous year. But through the first 10 months of this fiscal year, those same taxes produced 3% less. Total wages paid to workers closed out 2022 lower than the end of 2021, even in the high-flying places within the state (Gallatin, Missoula, and Flathead). With the exception of construction and tourism, most of the larger industries in the state went in reverse. And rising interest rates, inflation, high housing prices, and falling global commodity prices continue to shift the sands beneath the foundation of strong growth." -economicoutlookseminar.com
The two key speakers included the Director of the Bureau of Business and Economic Research, Patrick Barkey, and the President and CEO of the Montana Chamber of Commerce, Todd O'Hair. Brian Tudor, Amanda Weber, Chelsea Stewart, and Skyar Bonnette attended from our office. A few of the main takeaways our agents reported back including Brian Tudor quoting, "Montana is drawing a huge amount of energy, making us one of the fastest growing in the US." Amanda Weber shared, "Experts believe that we are not quite out of the woods yet with inflation; core inflation is still high compared to the long-term US average, so there is a possibility in the more volatile areas, for example, food, gas, etc. that have currently settled, to rise again and raise inflation up with it. It was also interesting to learn that Montana is trending towards importing more energy from out of state than it has in the past."
In the ever-evolving landscape of Montana's economy, the insights gained from the recent midyear Economic Outlook Seminar have given us a clearer perspective on the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. At ERA Landmark, we've always prided ourselves on not just being observers of economic trends, but active participants in the communities we serve. As agents of change, our commitment to our clients goes beyond real estate transactions; it extends to providing valuable insights, resources, and support in navigating the ever-changing economic landscape.