I know it seems I am constantly talking about forecasts and economic conditions and it’s probably because I am. Basically I get asked a few times a week about the economy, about the different projections online, and about the different data points- so I like sharing it here. This week had more of the same because several stories came out with reviews of both the first 6 months of 2016 and more recent month-to-month reporting. The story tones were mixed, mostly because the data was. On the positive- The AIA released a mid year update and while noting several roadblocks current and possible, was very confident in a positive finish to 2016 and an entire 2017. On the flip side- Dodge had their midyear piece and was not as confident, focusing more on the fact that we had fantastic growth and it’s slowing down a bit from that. Add to that the release that construction spending went down for a 3rd straight month and you could start sensing concern.
The analysts I follow and trust are still very much in the positive camp and actually expect some of these reports to be revised up after further review. Good, quick piece here fromBloomberg spells some of it out. Plus we are actually still ahead of 2015 by 6% so basically we are quibbling over how much growth and not just staying positive. In addition the mid year consensus has growth predicted to finish at almost 6% this year AND next. Still the memories of 2009 and 2010 are amazingly fresh in many of our minds and the time it took to really get cranking again seemed to take forever. So whenever we have these blips on the radar it does cause some angst. Bottom line for me right now is we’re in a good place, let’s keep rolling but obviously continue to monitor the trends.
One item that can and will have an effect but is not really known on how much is the US Presidential election. In normal cycles a Presidential election has an effect of some type. For those of us living in the US, this cycle is as far from normal as you can get. So that is surely an item to always have in the back of your head…
-- I am surely one that tries to support anything sustainable but I have a question for those of you experts out there. So I am online ordering tickets for a few upcoming ballgames. The site notes in order to “stay green” that paper tickets are unavailable. OK that makes sense. But then they note, mobile and electronic entry are not available so you need to “print your tickets at home.” So my question is, how are we being more sustainable if I print the tickets vs. the venue printing?
-- Fun picture laden piece that came via the great Twitter feed of Viracon’s Garret Henson (@Viracon_Garret) on fritted glass. I love looking at the buildings and usage of glass but I will say the article is a bit shortsighted. There are many more options than they listed or focused on to meet these aesthetic goals, and I would’ve like to seen them mentioned. Despite that glaring omission I love when glass is shown off like this. I just may have to do my own splashy photo piece showing the options!
-- On that note of great looking glass, I really enjoyed the blog post from Kris Iverson last week on the Glassblog. Clear, concise and helpful piece and yet another reminder that communication rules.
-- Last this week… The Olympics are underway and if you can remember this was the one that the US badly wanted for Chicago. The effort fell short back in 2009 when the games were awarded but can you imagine IF Chicago would’ve won? With the security shown at 4-day events like political conventions, I could only imagine the mess Chicago would’ve been during this. Oh and with an Olympiad that close, I would’ve done everything to go too… I know my pal Tom O’Malley of Clover Architectural with his Chicago connections would’ve taken great care of me!
LINKS of the WEEK
-- Dumpster pools… hilarious, innovative and soon to be no more.
-- Not sure what to make of this story…
-- A “bee hive” of justice for driving under the influence!
VIDEO of the WEEK
Bizarre screw up on America’s Got Talent recently. Guy gets shot in the neck with an arrow…