Headlines – Week of April 10, 2011

April 18, 2011

Florida Leads Nation in Potential Job Growth

According to a recent report by Wells Fargo, Florida is No. 1 in potential job growth once the state shakes off lingering effects from the recession.

The study looked at regional competitiveness, the factors that might lead employers to create jobs locally. To compile results, Wells Fargo analyzed 20 years of employment data and growth trends. It then projected future growth. While an expected boost in tourism post-recession played a part in Florida’s ranking, Wells Fargo also cited an expanded diversity in the state’s job market, such as the Scripps Research facility in Palm Beach County.

The study found Florida competitive in 22 industries. Georgia – No. 2 on the list – had 21. Wells Fargo considered traditionally white-collar industries as Florida strengths, including professional services, insurance and finance.

Here are the top ten states with a positive regional advantage in more than 17 industries:

  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • North Carolina
  • Arizona
  • Mississippi
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Alabama
  • Idaho

Full Report

Two Florida Cities Set for Dramatic Turnaround

Kiplinger.com recently named two Florida cities, Jacksonville and Orlando to its list of 11 comeback cities in 2011. According to the website, 2011 will see a “dramatic turnaround meaning new investment by businesses, growth in the number of jobs and a reblooming of hope” in the noted cities.

The website did not list the cities in any particular order.


Kiplinger predicts that Orlando employment will increase by 3 percent this year. It points to an improvement in tourism for the vacation destination, but also points to the growth of a “life science cluster of medical care and research.”


Kiplinger expects job growth of 2.8 percent this year. It points to increased demand from financial service firms, hotels, health care, restaurants and warehousing.

Other cities in the top 11 for a turnaround include:

  • Charlotte, N.C.
  • Chattanooga, Tenn.
  • Flint, Mich.
  • Las Vegas
  • Nashville, Tenn.
  • Phoenix
  • Portland, Ore.
  • San Jose, Calif.

Full Article

Florida’s massive ‘shadow inventory’ of homes

A recent study conducted by National Association of Realtors research economist Selma Hepp examines the volume of homes in limbo, the so-called “shadow inventory”.

Shadow inventory is generally described as the number of homes in bank inventory waiting to be sold plus the homes in that have been foreclosed but for a variety of reasons (redemption periods, marketing or legal reasons) are being held off the market and homes where the mortgages are delinquent and are likely to eventually be foreclosed. The shadow inventory is considered to be a marker for how long it will take for a depressed housing market to return to normal.  

Florida’s so-called “shadow inventory” is LARGE and according to the NAR study the state ranks No. 1 in the nation with 441,461 shadow homes.

California — twice the population as Florida — is in second place with 227,961 homes, followed by Illinois (121,226), New York (107,485), and Texas (93,761).

The issue in Florida, Hepp says, stems largely from the sheer size of the foreclosure inventory and the lengthy time it takes for delinquencies to reach foreclosure. In contrast, states like Nevada and Arizona rank in the top three states for foreclosures but are 16th and 11th in shadow inventory because their inventory is moving faster through the pipelines and makes up a larger share (55 percent in Arizona and almost 70 percent in Nevada) of all home sales.

The volume of shadow inventory is less of a problem than the length of time it will take before those homes are cleared.  

The NAR study has a silver lining since it is not Florida that will take the longest to rid itself of this overhang.  In that category is New Jersey, which may need as long as 51 months — more than four years to rid itself of its inventory.

Full Article

Posted by Scott R. Lodde


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