Fishkind Conversations: Orlando’s hospitality jobs are finally coming back

Florida’s unemployment rate dipped to 3.2% in March, and Central Florida’s labor markets were particularly strong.

How to rein in Orlando’s wild rental market

Apartment rental rates are skyrocketing across the country, but Florida’s rent increase was higher than any other state’s. It’s up by 30 percent since this time last year, with the biggest jumps found in Orlando, Tampa, and Miami.

Orange & Seminole see population drops post-pandemic

A new report from the US Census Bureau shows Florida’s biggest counties – including Orange and Seminole – losing population for the first time since Census tracking began.

Orlando’s job market slowest to recover among Florida metros

Florida’s overall job market is recovering to pre-pandemic levels…mostly.

How inflation and interest rates affect Central Florida

The Federal Reserve has announced it will raise interest rates to try to tamp down inflation.

Right now, consumer prices are up by nearly eight percent and gas prices have approached all-time highs.

Where the money goes in Florida’s record $112 bn state budget

Florida lawmakers have wrapped up this year’s legislative session by approving a record $112.1 billion state budget for the 2022-2023 fiscal year. That’s more than ten percent higher than the current budget.

Economic news shows Florida tourism sector continuing to improve

Employment rose by 689,000 in February, the unemployment rate dipped to 3.8%, and the labor force participation rate climbed. And revisions to previous months mean employment rates were even higher than first reported.

War in Ukraine economic effect on Central Florida “modest”

Many uncertainties cloud the future of the war in Ukraine.

FL property insurance soars, hitting homeowners in the wallet

Property insurance rates have been skyrocketing in Florida for the last five years, with many companies canceling people’s policies, leaving the state, or going out of business.

South FL condo collapse should spark state safety changes

The Champlain Towers condominium building collapse in South Florida killed 98 residents last June.

Surprise! January job growth beat expectations

Economists expected weak US job growth at best in January as Omicron surged, but a new report shows the economy added a significant 467,000 jobs instead. Tourism numbers are also sky-high, but so’s inflation…and the unemployment rate also ticked up a little.

How Rising Interest Rates Affect Central Florida

As expected, last week the Federal Reserve confirmed its plans to raise interest rates and shrink the money supply as soon as early March.

FL finances are about to get better

Florida’s job growth seemed to fall off a cliff in December – just under 12,000 jobs were created, compared to 50,000 in November.

Tourism-related gaps in Orlando’s recovering job market

Economic growth has rebounded strongly, but the recovery remains incomplete.

Making sense of new job numbers

US job growth slowed in December, but the unemployment rate fell to 3.9 percent at the same time.

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind has the Central Florida forecast for 2022

Things are looking up when it comes to the Central Florida economy in 2022, especially if Omicron peaks in January as expected.

90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind spoke with our reporter Danielle Prieur about possible challenges and successes the year may bring, along with some economic advice for listeners.

The Pandemic-driven Surge in Domestic Migration is Likely to Continue in 2022

The US population grew by just 0.1 % in 2021. That’s the lowest rate on record according to the Census Bureau’s report released last week. Birth rates have slowed since 2007, and this year COVID-19 became the 3rd leading cause of death.

Rollercoaster of latest economic news and how it affects Central Florida, explained

Economic news has been on a rollercoaster ride recently.

A deep dive into DeSantis’s proposed 2022 state budget

Governor Ron DeSantis recently unveiled his $99.7 billion proposed state budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1st 2022.

Local economy not quite as bad as it seems

The rapid spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant and November’s unexpectedly weak employment report are combining to cause concern among economists. There’s a fear the economic recovery may stall.

DeSantis’s gas tax cut is “not good economics”

Governor Ron DeSantis is proposing a tax cut of around $1 billion to Florida’s gas tax. DeSantis says the move would save the average Sunshine State family $200.

Leisure and hospitality led a surge in job growth in Florida for October

Florida’s economy added 41,500 jobs in October and the unemployment rate dropped by 0.2% to 4.6%.

Economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind, president of Fishkind Litigation Services, tells WMFE’s Matthew Peddie it’s a positive sign for the economy, even if Central Florida lagged behind the rest of the state in job growth.

Orlando’s sky-high rent boosted by inflation

Inflation surged to a 31-year high over the last two months.

A surprise batch of good economic news

Economics is often referred to as the dismal science, and since the start of the pandemic it’s been more dismal than usual.

DeSantis’ anti-mandate special session is wrong policy

Gov. Ron DeSantis has called a special session beginning November 15th. He wants the state legislature to pass laws blocking vaccine mandates, and stopping public schools from both requiring masks and imposing quarantines.

Calling out ‘bad math’ of inflated jobs numbers

New data estimates that Florida’s payroll employment jumped by 84,000 in September.

Housing market cooling down

Central Florida’s red-hot housing market seems to be cooling a little faster than the national average, with home sales and prices on the decline.

Delta dashed hopes for latest jobs report

The latest jobs report is out and it’s not the employment-palooza that many analysts were expecting. Instead, job growth slowed and unemployment claims rose.

Higher flood insurance rates heading for FL homeowners

Florida homeowners: if you live on the coast, brace yourselves for the possibility of higher flood insurance rates.

Why Did Orlando Home Prices Skyrocket?

After skyrocketing over the last 24 months, home prices flattened out and existing-home sales dipped in Florida.

New Job Numbers Are A Mixed Bag

Florida’s August employment report seems both good and bad. Job growth hit the brakes as about 8,000 hotel and food service jobs disappeared, but the labor force grew by 65,000 and the number of people unemployed dipped by one thousand.

The Federal Vaccine Mandate And The Economy

Last week President Biden announced a 6-pronged strategy to combat COVID-19 including vaccine mandates for federal employees, health care workers and companies with more than 100 employees. There’s been pushback from a number of Republican governors including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Economist Hank Fishkind tells WMFE’s Matthew Peddie that in spite of the political headwinds the president’s strategy could help Central Florida’s economy as we head into fall.

The Pandemic, Child Care & The Economy

One of the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the effect on the workforce, with childcare centers closed and children at home. The US Chamber of Commerce says reopening childcare centers is essential to building back a healthy economy. Economic analyst, Dr. Hank Fishkind, president of Fishkind Litigation Services, tells WMFE’s Matthew Peddie that without childcare, working parents will have a hard time returning to work- especially for jobs that can’t be done remotely.

Positive Signs For Florida In US Jobs Numbers

The economic recovery from the pandemic continues. Last week it was reported that US payroll employment grew by 850-thousand in June, beating expectations. Economic analyst, Dr. Hank Fishkind, tells WMFE’s Matthew Peddie that the national numbers are good- and Florida’s economy is picking up as well.

How The Recovery Could Play Out For Central Florida

Real GDP grew at a booming 6.5% annualized rate in the first quarter, according to last week’s report from the Commerce Department. WMFE’s Matthew Peddie talks with economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind, president of Fishkind Litigation Services about the prospects for the United States and Florida’s economies.

On DeSantis Ending Federal Unemployment Assistance 2 Months Early

Governor Ron DeSantis will stop the flow of federal pandemic unemployment assistance to Florida residents as of Saturday. DeSantis is ending the supplemental $300 per week in benefits, two months before the federal program runs out.

On The State Of Florida Suing The CDC Over Cruises

The state of Florida’s case against the CDC over the cruise ship industry’s reopening protocols is unfolding in federal court. Florida is fighting the CDC’s Conditional Sailing Order for cruise lines, saying among other things that the restrictions cause irreparable harm to Florida’s economy.

On Jobs Coming Back To Tourism, And What It Really Means For Central FL

Job growth is picking up nationally in Central Florida’s biggest industry – leisure and hospitality – and economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind says that bodes well for our area’s recovery.

On Central Florida’s Economic Comeback

The latest economic news points to a stronger economic rebound than expected with a surge of leisure travel and rising consumer spending.

On An Uneven Employment Recovery

Florida’s April job gains jumped by nearly 17,000, but the unemployment rate also rose. To make things even more confusing, some restaurants and retailers say they’re finding it hard to hire the staff they need to fully reopen.

New Deal On Gambling Could Rake In Billions For Florida

Florida lawmakers kicked off a special session yesterday to consider an overhaul of the state’s gambling industry, and a 30 year compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. Economist Dr. Hank Fishkind with Fishkind Litigation Services tells WMFE’s Matthew Peddie there’s billions of dollars in tax revenue at stake.

Population Changes And What They Mean For Florida

Last week the Census Bureau released its latest population estimates for counties and metro areas for 2020. These estimates were made WITHOUT the 2020 census results, which have sparked some undercounting concerns for economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind.

A Look At Next Year’s FL State Budget

Last week the Florida Legislature passed a $101.5 billion-dollar budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1st.

How The Pandemic Will Change The Structure Of Life And Work

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated structural changes that were already happening across the U.S., and new data from the Census Bureau and the U.S. Postal Service show us how fast the changes are happening. About 30 million change-of-address requests show many more people moving out of major cities and into the surrounding suburbs and beyond.

The Impact Of Vaccine Passports On The Economy

Earlier this month, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an executive order banning local governments from issuing so-called vaccine passports.

Jobs And The Changing Face Of A Post-COVID World

Florida added nearly 20,000 jobs in February and the unemployment rate dipped to 4.7 percent.

Medicaid Expansion Would Benefit Florida’s Coffers As Well As Its People

The $1.9 trillion-dollar America Rescue Plan – or ARP – has new incentives for states to expand their Medicaid programs. The federal government will pay nearly 100 percent of the expansion cost for two years, then 90 percent ever year, providing health insurance for 800,000 Floridians who now have none.

The American Rescue Plan’s Effect On Florida

President’s Biden’s $1.9 trillion-dollar American Rescue Plan – ARP for short – is now law. Economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind says the state of Florida will get 10.2 billion dollars, and there’s also money for every county and most cities statewide.

Economically Uneven Pandemic Effects

A new report from Florida’s Department of Revenue says taxable sales in December 2020 were a whopping $176 million higher than in December 2019.

Mythbusting The ‘American Rescue Plan’

The US House of Representatives has passed President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion dollar American Rescue Plan. And now, economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind tells WMFE’s Nicole Darden Creston that the Senate must do the same…because it’s vital for the US economy and particularly important for Florida.

Tourism Lags, But Economy Slowly Brightens

Stronger economic growth appears to be just around the corner, even if Central Florida is lagging a bit behind.

Florida’s Drinking Water Is Drying Up

You may be surprised to learn that Florida is quickly running out of cheap, clean drinking water as its population grows.

Jobs Numbers Come In Under Expectations

The latest employment reports were disappointing to economists. Job growth in January was minimal and new claims for unemployment rose again in Florida. However, the national unemployment rate fell by a fraction of a percent.

The Governor’s Budget

Governor Ron DeSantis has released his proposed $96.6 billion-dollar budget for the next fiscal year. It’s more than four billion dollars higher than last year’s budget, which seems surprising during a time of projected economic shortfalls due to the COVID-19 recession.

Central Florida Not Sharing Sunshine State’s Good Jobs News

Florida’s employment report for December showed nearly 17,000 jobs added and unemployment dipping to 6.1 percent.

As COVID-19 Cases Rise, Florida’s Tourism Economy Drops…Again

Last week infection rates surged across the U.S. and here in Florida, and there were reports of sharp drops in economic activity in response. Retail sales dropped for the third month in a row and new unemployment claims climbed.

Economic Fallout From The Week Of 1/6

As Central Florida joins the nation in grappling with the political and legal fallout from last week’s unprecedented events, economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells WMFE’s Nicole Darden Creston there are also economic impacts to consider.

2021 Will Get Better In The 2nd Half

2021 will turn out to be a very good year for our economy, but most of the improvements will come in the 2nd half of the year. That’s according to economic analyst Hank Fishkind.

FL’s Pandemic Economy And Ways To Improve It

The latest Pulse Report from the Census Bureau documents the damage the pandemic has done to the U.S. and Florida economies. But WMFE’s economist Dr. Hank Fishkind says the report also points to some pathways for recovery.

When COVID-19 Cases Climb, The Economy Falters

The surge in Covid-19 cases has caused economic growth to slow again in the U.S. and here in Florida, according to newly-released data.

Dr. Fishkind’s Economic Prescriptions For Faster Recovery

Vaccinations are getting underway this week across the US, in all 50 states. Most states are starting inoculations with frontline health care workers.

Don’t Confuse The Steering Wheel For The Rear View Mirror

If the economy is like a car, 2020 has, in many ways, driven us in the wrong direction. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says one thing to keep in mind is the difference between the steering wheel and the rear view mirror.

Incoming Vaccines And The Months Between

The stock market is rising, along with hopes that two possible COVID-19 vaccines may be on the way…in a few months.

What Biden’s Win Says About Money Matters

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the election shows that the American people voted in favor of moderate economic policies, when they voted for Democratic President-elect Joe Biden and what could be balancing influences in the form of Republicans taking more seats in the US House and potentially the Senate.

The Economy Of The Elections

Today’s election will have significant implications for our economy no matter who wins at the national, state, and local levels.

Renewable Energy In The Sunshine State

Renewable energy has been getting a lot of attention lately, from the last presidential debate to OUC’s new plan for reaching zero carbon emissions by 2050.

September Numbers Show The Economy Picking Up- But For How Long?

Economic reports published last week were positive- both for the local economy and the country.

A Raise In Florida’s Minimum Wage?

One of the issues facing Florida voters on November 3rd is whether to raise the state’s minimum wage.

Economics Of A “Phase 3” Reopening

In a surprise move on Friday, September 25, 2020, Governor Ron DeSantis shifted Florida to “Phase 3” reopening, lifting capacity limitations on all businesses, including restaurants, bars, and attractions.

How We Care For Our Tourism-Dependent Economy

State economists are saying that travel and tourism sectors are in a depression. And they’re predicting that Central Florida’s tourism-dependent economy may not recover for two or three years.

Economic Recovery Is Slower Than It Looks

Recent reports say the US unemployment rate fell to 8.4% in August and 1.4 million jobs were generated. Also, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has banned evictions through December, and, locally, tourist development tax collections in Orange County have improved.

The Economic Recovery Is Slowing And It’s Uneven

The economic recovery is slowing down…and it’s benefiting some groups of people more than others.

Making Sense Of Pandemic Jobs Numbers

Jobs numbers during the pandemic can seem confusing, as if the data points conflict with one another.

Housing Remains Strong Despite The Downturn

Housing markets are one of the few bright spots in the national economy.

Economic Modeling Shows Reopening Schools Will Raise COVID-19 Infections

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind is not an epidemiologist, but the statistical and mathematical models he uses in his work are similar.

As Coronavirus Worsens, Economic Outlook Does Too

New economic data for the US and for Central Florida are giving us a clearer picture of how coronavirus is affecting finances, but 90.7’s economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind says the picture isn’t pretty.

Coronavirus Controls The Economy

The coronavirus is in control of the economy.

That’s how economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind explains the relationship between the virus and Florida’s attempt at an economic recovery.

Economic Cost Is Climbing From Florida’s COVID-19 Spike

With COVID-19 cases spiking in the US and Florida case counts hitting new all-time highs, economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind offers his diagnosis of the economic consequences to 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston.

Florida’s COVID-19 Case Growth Undercuts Fledgling Economic Recovery

COVID-19 cases are spiking across the country and setting new records in Florida. Economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind says the rising numbers jeopardize the nascent economic recovery and there is a strong possibility that another lockdown may be needed in hot spots like Texas and Florida.

The Economics Of Police Reform

As cities and counties across Florida sign their budgets for the fiscal year, they face the challenge of the COVID-19 recession and the impact of protests over racial injustice and policing. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind, president of Fishkind Litigation Services, tells 90.7’s Matthew Peddie that reforming public safety and policing can improve the quality and efficiency of the service.

Strong Job Growth In May Is A Surprise For Florida

Job growth in Florida was surprisingly strong in May, up 182,900, according to economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind.

The Worst Of The Recession Has Passed, But Effects Will Linger

The worst of the COVID-19 recession may be behind us, but economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind says the effects will linger until there’s a vaccine.

Is The COVID-19 Recession Over?

May’s U-S unemployment report showed a surprising drop to 13.3%, better than expected.

We’ve Reached The Bottom

The latest financial reports seem to suggest that the economy is stabilizing…a little sooner than economic analyst Hank Fishkind thought it would.

Where Do We Go From Here?

Economic data continues to bring unwelcome news, as the job market struggles due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Stimulus Or Not?

Mixed economic messages are coming from the White House today.

A Slow Path Toward Recovery

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind is seeing some very early signs that the COVID-19 recession may be reaching its bottom, after US employment plummeted by a historic 20.2 million jobs in April.

What’s Ahead As Florida Reopens?

As Florida’s economy begins to reopen, economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind is looking ahead at what the next few months will look like for Central Florida.

How Do We Reopen In Central Florida?

State and local leaders have put together advisory committees to recommend ways to reopen Florida’s economy.

Florida’s Unemployment Rate Skyrockets Due To Coronavirus Shutdowns

The latest jobless numbers in the United States are dire, with Florida’s unemployment rate headed north of the national 20 percent and Orlando’s jumping even higher.

What Re-opening Central Florida Might Look Like

Public health officials are beginning to see the number of new coronavirus cases level off in some hard-hit areas around the country. That’s leading economists to look toward a plan for reopening the economy.

Country Not Headed For Depression

Recent economic reports show a record-shattering 10 million Americans applied for unemployment compensation in the last two weeks, and the markets on a roller coaster ride.

Florida’s Unemployment System Under Pressure

We’re getting a first glimpse into economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. Unemployment compensation claims are at record highs.

Economy In Freefall

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the national, state and local economies are in freefall due to the pandemic.

Pandemic Amplifies The Recession

Details around coronavirus are rapidly evolving. 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston asks economic analyst Hank Fishkind about the economic impact and the federal, state and local response.

The Impact Of Coronavirus On Central Florida

U.S. and global markets are reacting strongly to the spread of coronavirus.

Sticking Points In The State Budget

Florida’s legislative session ends on March 13th. And even though most of the big decisions have been made, the most important one is still being debated – the state budget.

Coronavirus And The Economy

Worries over COVID-19 and the slower pace of U.S. economic growth triggered a sharp selloff in U.S. stock markets and interest rates dropped to near record lows, as investors sold stock and purchased safer U.S. treasuries. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind, president of Fishkind Litigation Services, tells 90.7’s Matthew Peddie that it’s a serious trend for the US and for the Central Florida economy, because of its structure and dependence on tourism.

Traffic Headaches And Economic Solutions

Traffic congestion.

Hunting Zombies With Hank

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind has become a zombie hunter.

Is Florida’s Job Growth Sustainable?

Florida’s unemployment rate dropped to an all time low of just 3% in December 2019 as the state added 212,000 jobs over the year. That’s according to Friday’s announcement by Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity.


As Florida’s annual legislative session gets underway, economic analyst Hank Fishkind predicts that a fight over the budget is likely to dominate the proceedings.


Last week the Census Bureau announced that the US population grew by 1.5 million from 2018 to 2019, which was the slowest rate since 1917.


Florida’s economic outlook for 2020 is good but not great. That’s according to economic commentator Hank Fishkind. He tells 90.7’s Matthew Peddie that slowing domestic migration and tourism are worrying signs for the economy.


Last week the Florida Supreme Court approved a proposed constitutional amendment to be included on the November 2020 ballot.


Each month a variety of economic indicators are published for the national, state and local economies. Among these the report on sales of existing homes is one of the most important and most reliable.


Last week Monroe County requested $150 million in state funding to begin protecting the Florida Keys from the impact of sea level rise.


New data from the Census Bureau shows U.S. mobility rate has fallen to its lowest level since 1948. The sharp slowdown in migration in the U.S. is cause for concern, especially for Florida’s economy.

90.7’s Brendan Byrne spoke with economic analyst Hank Fishkind about why migration is so important to Florida’s economy.


Governor Ron DeSantis announced his proposed budget for the 2020 fiscal year.


Florida’s October jobs report gives us a bird’s eye view of the larger state economy and how it’s growing.


The annual state-to-state migration report is out.


A new report on existing home sales paints a complex picture of the broader economy.


The U.S. Census aims to count the entire population of the country, at the location where each person usually lives. it includes citizens, non-citizen legal residents, non-citizen long-term visitors and undocumented immigrants. But the Census Bureau said it might not be able to hire all of the 500,000 enumerators it needs to make a full count.


A new jobs report shows Florida’s unemployment rate fell to 3.2 percent, marking a new low.


Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings’ Housing For All affordable housing task force has released its preliminary recommendations ahead of its November 15th final report to the Orange County Commission.


Brexit – the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union – is having an economic impact here in Central Florida, despite its geographical distance from the Sunshine State and uncertainty over whether it will even happen.


Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2018 ruling allowing states to collect sales taxes on internet-based sales, forty-two states and the District of Columbia have enacted policies to do just that.


Last week’s economic news was dominated by the report that the Federal Reserve cut the federal funds rate quarter of a percentage point, and that the Fed had to intervene in the overnight repurchase market.


A new survey shows a surprising number of Central Floridians skipping or delaying needed health care due to its cost.


Sometimes it’s difficult to assess hot-button topics from a strictly economic point of view.


5G technology is being rolled out globally and locally. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says 5G will be transformational for the economy, in part by enabling fully autonomous vehicles and drones.


Florida’s latest reports on tourism and employment show continuing economic growth for the Sunshine State.


Housing affordability is becoming an increasing problem across the nation and particularly here in Central Florida. Economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind notes how odd this is, given that the country is enjoying the longest economic expansion in U.S. history with very low interest rates and strong gains in employment.


Lake Washington is Brevard County’s largest lake and for Melbourne, a primary source of drinking water.


June marks another strong month for Florida job growth – 16,000 new jobs last month alone and about 227,000 since this time last year.


In addition to human concerns and political stakes, immigration plays a very important economic role in the U.S., especially in Florida and here in Central Florida, according to economic analyst Hank Fishkind.


We’re six months into the year, so 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston checked in with economic analyst Hank Fishkind to take stock of Florida’s economy.


The US Supreme Court has blocked for now the inclusion of the citizenship question from the 2020 census.


Defending coastal communities from rising seas will cost the United States more than $400 billion over the next 20 years.


According to data from the real estate website Zillow, home prices dipped in Orlando in May for the first time since 2012. This ends a whopping 86-month streak where the value of the median home shot up 94% to $239,200, Zillow said.


The long-delayed $19.1 billion federal disaster relief bill is now law. It includes $2.4 billion for areas hit by Hurricane Michael last October, like the Panhandle towns of Mexico Beach and Panama City, and $1 billion to help rebuild Tyndall Air Force Base.


Last Friday President Trump startled financial markets by announcing he’ll impose across the board tariffs on Mexico beginning on June 10th, unless Mexico does more to curb illegal immigration. The tariffs will start at 5%, rising to as high as 25% unless Mexico stops the flow of migrants into the U.S.


Recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that population rates grew much more slowly than earlier in the decade in most of the nation’s largest cities.


Two big economic reports for Florida just came out, and at first glance, they look great – job growth spiked in April by more than 10,000 from the month before, and tourism numbers for the first quarter of 2019 more than doubled from the previous quarter.


Two big economic reports for Florida just came out, and at first glance, they look great. Job growth spiked in April by more than 10,000 from the month before, and tourism numbers for the first quarter of 2019 more than doubled from the previous quarter.


Both the Orlando area and Volusia County saw record-breaking tourism numbers last year, according to new reports.


Believe it or not, if you want to keep on top of economic trends, you’ll find one of the most reliable indicators in what is perhaps an unexpected place.


The U.S. Census Bureau has released its population growth estimates for last year. The report covers the time frame of July 2017 through July 2018.


Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says we’re about to see revolutionary changes on our roadways, as autonomous cars cruise into our everyday lives.


Orlando is one of 17 U.S. cities in the running to host the 2026 World Cup.


The Orlando metro area is ranked worst in the US for housing affordability for people who make $24,600 per year or less.


Gov. Ron DeSantis has proposed $625 million in spending for environmental programs, including Everglades restoration, springs protection, and a septic-to-sewer conversion plan.


Traffic congestion is one of the most vexing problems we face. It can frazzle nerves and sometimes add hours to the commute.


Two Central Florida counties may soon join about two dozen other counties across the Sunshine State…in taxing themselves.


When it comes to state taxes, Florida has an unusual approach. It’s one of only seven states in the US with no income tax.


Governor Ron DeSantis has released his $91.3 billion budget proposal for the Florida Legislature to consider when its session begins next month.


The longest partial federal government shutdown on record has come to an end. Congress passed and President Trump signed a continuing resolution that funds the portion of the government that was closed, with the funding lasting until February 15th.


New numbers from the state show Florida’s December unemployment rate at 3.3 percent – lower than the national average, which stands at 3.9 percent. (That difference may be more significant than it sounds. As any school kid trying to make the Honor Roll can attest, every tenth of a percent counts.)


In one of his first acts as Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis signed a sweeping executive order aimed at protecting the state’s environment and water quality.


Every January, 90.7 checks in with economic analyst Hank Fishkind for his financial forecast for the coming year.


Economic incentives – such as slashed property taxes or payments tied to the number of jobs brought in by a business – have become the norm for city and state governments to get businesses to relocate.


New and existing home sales have slowed in the U.S. over the last six months.


The recently-released National Climate Assessment report presents some stark warnings about economic, environmental, and health-related consequences of climate change for the United States.


The holiday shopping season officially begins this week, and the outlook from retail financial groups is sunny: the National Retail Federation predicts sales for the season to jump between 4.3% and 4.8% this year, and the expected uptick from the Florida Retail Federation is in same range at about 4.5%.


The midterm election results might be viewed as an illustration of political divisions both in the U.S. and statewide. For instance, on the national level, Democrats regained control of the House resulting in divided government, and in state politics key races were so tight that recounts are underway for Governor, Agriculture Secretary, and US Senate.


Florida and the U.S. continue to grapple with the aftermath of Hurricane Michael. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that, along with the storm’s devastating human toll, there also will be a significant and long-lasting financial impact. Fishkind says Michael will be one of the ten most costly hurricanes on record.


Florida’s Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis has recently joined his Democratic opponent Andrew Gillum in releasing a proposed economic platform.


Record job growth in Central Florida isn’t enough for sustainable economic growth.


With Election Day just seven weeks away, economic analyst Hank Fishkind set out to review the economic policies of candidates for statewide office.


In last week’s primaries, Floridians chose Democrat Andrew Gillum and Republican Ron DeSantis to be their candidates for Florida’s next governor.


Mobility, whether within the US or from overseas, is an important part of the US and Florida economies. But Americans aren’t moving around as much as they used to.


Florida’s employment report for July showed job numbers are up… and unemployment is down.


Florida voters face a number of amendments on the ballot this fall-including Amendment 5.


There are 13 proposed constitutional amendments on the November ballot. Among them is Amendment 1 that would provide a homestead exemption on the portion of home values between $100,000 and $125,000, meaning some of a home’s value would be exempted from property taxes other than school district taxes.


There are a variety of amendments on the ballot in Florida this fall including Amendment 13, which would ban Greyhound racing in Florida if approved by more than 60% of the voters.


Job growth accelerated again in June according to the latest release from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, and the unemployment rate remained at 3.8%.


Last week Governor Scott declared a state of emergency in seven Florida counties to combat the toxic green algae bloom caused by water discharges from Lake Okeechobee.


Disney won its case against the Orange County Property Appraiser over how much it should pay in property taxes for one of its hotels.


Now that the qualifying deadline has passed for most candidates in Florida’s 2018 elections, voters may soon begin to hear some debate about the Sunshine State’s economic policy.


Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity announced that Florida’s unemployment rate dipped to 3.8% in May due to accelerating job growth.


Existing home sales in Florida rebounded in April reversing a decline in March.


President Trump’s tariffs on imported steel and aluminum from Canada, Mexico and the European Union sent shock waves around the globe.


Demographics drive an economy.


Florida’s unemployment rate held steady in April at 3.9 percent. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind took a look at the numbers and goes over them with news director Catherine Welch.


Florida’s Department of Corrections is grappling with a $28 million budget gap.


The latest job numbers, federal interest rates, and international trade tensions.


As Orange County commissioners consider developing a Children’s Trust, 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind digs into the economics of boosting social services for needy kids.


The latest data on Florida’s retail numbers shows a big eight percent jump in sales over the last twelve months.


Newly-released tourism numbers show Florida had another record-setting year in 2017 with 116 million visitors. That’s about 3.6 percent more than 2016.


Florida lawmakers have crafted a budget that needs to be wrapped up on Friday. That’s when the legislative session ends. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind and news director Catherine Welch sat down to talk about how last-minute gun proposals would fit into the budget.


Sales of existing homes tumbled in January nationwide, falling 3.2 percent compared with December and down by 4.8 percent from January 2017. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says this seems very surprising since interest rates are low, job growth is strong, and home prices have rebounded above their prior peak in 2005.


Orlando’s housing inventory is low, which has naturally been a boon for sellers and bellyache for buyers. But as 90.7’s Catherine Welch discovered by talking with our economic analyst Hank Fishkind, rising housing prices can also be a drag on the local economy.

The Economics of Immigration

Debate has erupted over U.S. immigration policy after President Trump’s reported use of derogatory language during his rejection of a bipartisan proposal for immigration reform last week.

GOP Tax Measure May Lead More Families To Florida

The newly passed Tax Cut and Jobs Act is widely expected to stimulate economic growth modestly this year, but there are lingering questions about how it works and how much effect it will have in American households.

How Should Florida Fund Tourism Promotion And Spend The ‘Bed Tax’?

The 2018 state legislative session begins next week, and lawmakers will again take up one of Florida’s perennial hot-button issues – tourism promotion. Last year, a dispute over the topic between Governor Rick Scott and House Speaker Richard Corcoran nearly disrupted the session. And this year, Scott’s budget proposal requests $100 million for Visit Florida, the state’s tourism promotion group.

Are Public-Private Partnerships the New Road Toward New Roads?

President-elect Donald Trump has made privatization of public works a centerpiece of his strategy to rebuild America’s aging infrastructure. So far, proposals from his new infrastructure task force include billions of dollars in tax credits for private investors willing to tackle big public infrastructure projects…like roads, bridges, and water and sewer systems. 90.7’s Nicole Darden-Creston [...]

How Will New Tax Cut Plan Affect Florida Households?

At the time of this writing, the GOP tax cut plan is scheduled for votes this week and the president is expected to sign it on Friday. The legislation, called the “Tax Cut and Jobs Act,” would cut both business and individual taxes as part of the biggest tax overhaul in 30 years.

Central Florida Affordable Housing In Short Supply

The lack of affordable housing affects communities across the U.S. and particularly here in Central Florida. Local leaders have been working to develop new plans and policies in a series of workshops.

Florida’s Housing Markets After Irma And Maria

It looks like Florida’s housing markets recovered from the impact of Hurricane Irma, according to the latest housing data.

What Drives Florida Tourism’s Record Highs?

The Sunshine State continues to set records for tourism. According to the latest report from Visit Florida, late summer numbers were up more than three percent over last year’s record-setting high for the three months ending in September. 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind what he thinks is driving this long-running surge [...]

The Proposed Tax Plan’s Effect on Florida

U.S. House Republican leaders have unveiled their tax plan, called the “Tax Cut and Jobs Bill.”

Irma’s Effect on Florida Jobs

When Hurricane Irma struck Florida last month, it affected all of the state’s major metro areas as it worked its way up the peninsula. It knocked out power to more than seven million customers and caused significant pockets of flooding, among other damage. More than six million people evacuated their homes.

How Will Aca Changes Affect Floridians?

Last week, President Trump announced two executive orders rolling back portions of the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as the ACA or Obamacare. One order would stop payments to insurance companies that lower deductibles for low-income customers, and the other allows companies to offer policies with fewer required benefits. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s [...]

Why Aren’t Florida Home Sales Raising the Roof?

Sales of new and existing homes have declined for three straight months, and now they are no better than they were this time last year. Even here in Florida, existing home sales are up only 1%. This all seems surprising since mortgage rates are low and the economy is strong – especially here in the [...]

How Will Evacuees From Puerto Rico Affect Florida’s Economy?

Residents, aid groups, and government agencies are beginning to grapple with the tragic consequences facing Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands after Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Elaine Duke, acting U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary, said both the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico are dealing with “total devastation.” “We had zero power and [...]

What’s Up with Quantitative Easing?

The Federal Reserve is making moves that could affect interest rates on mortgages. 90.7’s Catherine Welch checked in with economic analyst Hank Fishkind for his take on what The Fed is doing with “quantitative easing.” {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

The Economic Impact of Hurricane Irma

Estimates on the economic impact of Hurricane Irma are coming in at anywhere from $35 billion to $70 billion. Hank says hotels may have lost tourists but they filled rooms with workers helping to repair damage.

What can Florida Learn from Hurricane Harvey?

Houston and its surrounding areas are still recovering from the devastation Hurricane Harvey wrought, and now Florida is nervously eyeing Hurricane Irma churning out in the Atlantic. In addition to the tragic loss of lives, economic analyst Hank Fishkind says Harvey will wind up one of the most expensive natural disasters in U-S history –with [...]

Florida Home Sales Sizzle in July Heat

A new report from the Florida Association of Realtors shows existing home sales climbing two percent over July’s numbers last year, with home prices jumping a significant nine percent. So, as economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston, Florida’s housing market seems almost as hot as our summer. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Florida Employment Still Strong…But Why Did Orlando Slip From Top Spot For Job Growth?

Florida’s latest jobs report shows the Sunshine State still going strong, growing by nearly three percent over last year with unemployment holding steady at just over four percent.

Central Florida Cities Lead Trend of Adding Ride-Sharing to Public Transit

Several central Florida cities are on the leading edge of what seems to be a new nationwide trend – the integration of ride-sharing or ride-hailing services with public transportation. Altamonte Springs, Lake Mary, Maitland, Sanford and Longwood offer discounts on Uber rides that begin and end within each city. Orlando does not participate as of this writing

Immigration Policies and Florida’s Economics

President Trump has endorsed a proposed immigration reform called the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act – the RAISE Act for short. While the bill is unlikely to pass in its current form, 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says it spotlights important economic issues within the contentious U.S. immigration debate.

Orlando’s Severe Affordable Housing Shortage and What to Do About It

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that’s one of the conclusions of a new study by National Low Income Housing Coalition. The researchers measured housing affordability using a standard formula developed by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department, or HUD. According to Fishkind, the study found that few places in the country have enough rentals for [...]

Why is Wage Growth Still Slow?

Despite new Labor Department reports that say job numbers continue to grow, economic analyst Hank Fishkind says wages are not keeping pace. He says that although slow wage growth has been one of the hallmarks of this recovery, the news is still a bit of a surprise since the economy is near what experts call [...]

How the Proposed Health Care Plan Would Affect Florida

Last week, U.S. Senate Republicans unveiled their plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

New Florida Budget Gets a D+

Last Friday lawmakers struck last-minute deals on schools, roads, tourism and water to bring a bumpy special session to an end and pass an $81 billion budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1st. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says if he had to grade it, he’d give it a dismal D+. He says [...]

More to Florida’s April Jobs Report Than Meets the Eye

Florida’s latest jobs report looks pretty positive, with growth rebounding by 10,900, a number that more than offsets the loss reported in March. If you think you hear a “however” coming…you’re right, says economic analyst Hank Fishkind. He tells 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston about the important trends he’s found underneath the surface of the report. [...]

How Florida Would Fare Under Trump’s Budget Proposal

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind has been looking at President Trump’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2018, which starts October 1st, and assessing its potential impact on Florida’s economy. He walks 90.7’s Nicole Creston through his findings, beginning with a quick summary of the budget. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

What Retail Sales Tell Us About Florida’s Future

90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind is keeping an eye on retail sales, but not because he’s hunting for bargain-basement prices. He says rebounding statewide and national retail sales numbers are important economic predictors of coming trends, especially for Florida. 90.7’s Nicole Darden-Creston asked him for a refresher course on why retail reports are a big [...]


The legislature passed a bill last week that could provide an additional $25,000 tax exemption for homeowners.

How the GDP is Linked to Tourism

New numbers are out on the gross domestic product. Our economic analyst Hank Fishkind pored over the numbers, and shares with 90.7’s Catherine Welch a few things that has him keeping an eye on international tourism. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

A “Pivotal” Policy Week and A Peek at Florida’s Jobs

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind is bracing for what he says will be a “pivotal” week for financial news on the both the national and state levels. He’s also sifting through Florida’s newly-released jobs report. He tells 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston the state’s job growth slowed to just 6,200 last month, but the bigger news is in the [...]

What’s Wrong with Proposed Florida Budgets?

Last week the Florida Legislature passed competing budgets for the upcoming fiscal year beginning on July 1st.

Population Is Up, But Building Permits Are Not…What Gives?

Population in the Sunshine State is still ballooning, job numbers are still growing, there’s even an investment boom underway in Central Florida, as economic analyst Hank Fishkind told us last week. So he says it’s somewhat surprising that a new report shows requests for home-building permits lagging behind both population growth and job formation. So, [...]

Florida’s Surprise Investment Boom

There’s an investment boom going on in central Florida, with theme parks pouring billions into new attractions. Walt Disney World is adding new sections based on the “Star Wars” film franchise and the movie “Avatar,” and Universal Orlando is building Volcano Bay and an attraction based on the “Fast and Furious” series. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank [...]

Florida’s Housing, Jobs, Population Reports Paint A Rosy Picture

Three sets of numbers came out last week: employment numbers, Census numbers and housing numbers. Hank Fishkind dug into the data and tells 90.7’s Catherine Welch what they say about Florida’s economy.

What Florida’s Environment Means To Its Economy

There’s an important link between the quality of Florida’s environment and the health of its economy that’s sometimes hard to see. That’s according to economic analyst Hank Fishkind.

How Republican Health Care Plan Affects Floridians

House Republicans have unveiled their plan to replace the Affordable Care Act. And as Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Catherine Welch, the rolling back of Medicaid expansion and introduction of tax credits will have a huge impact on Florida. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

What Is the Labor Force Participation Rate, and Why Should We Care?

Last week in his address to a joint session of Congress, President Donald Trump emphasized the need to get the economy growing faster to create more jobs because 94 million Americans are not working. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says since there are 254 million people in the US, this would mean 37 percent of [...]

Ups and Downs Across Florida In Housing Markets

In the Sunshine State, though, there was wide variation in the number of home sales compared to last year – for instance, sales were up 12 percent in Tampa, five percent in Orlando and Jacksonville, but only by 2.6 percent in Miami…and they were down seven percent in southwest Florida. 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston asked economic analyst Hank [...]

Florida Mulls Gov. Scott’s Budget Plan

Tax cuts and limited spending are also priorities for legislative leaders in the state House.

90.7’s Nicole Darden-Creston asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind if he thinks this is the best approach to grow Florida’s economy.

What Aca Changes Could Mean for Florida

During the ACA’s open enrollment period that ended January 31st, 9.2 million people enrolled in the 39 states that use the federal health insurance exchange website, with Florida topping enrollment lists.

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind looks at the ACA from the perspective of Florida’s finances, and walks 90.7’s Nicole Darden Creston through what changes in the program could mean for the state.

Tourism’s Recent Roller Coaster Ride

It’s been a roller coaster ride recently for tourism, an industry vital to central Florida’s economy.

Inside Gov. Scott’s Tax Cut Plan

Gov. Rick Scott Tuesday released his official budget proposal for the 2017 fiscal year. It includes what economic analyst Hank Fishkind calls an “ambitious” $618 million tax cut program. Its centerpiece is a $454 million cut in the taxes that businesses pay to rent space. Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Darden-Creston how he thinks the state budget will [...]

Budget Resolution and Retail Numbers Offer Sneak Peek Into 2017

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says two recent developments in financial news offer a preview of money matters for the coming year: details of the new Congressional budget resolution and retail sales data for the US and Florida.

Orlando’s Housing Market Tops the 2017 Charts

The real estate website Zillow has released its list of the hottest housing markets for 2017…and Orlando gets the top spot.

Do Economic Incentives Really Lure Businesses?

There’s been a lot of news recently about economic incentive payments for businesses. After attention was focused on a Carrier furnace plant’s plans to move 2,000 jobs to Mexico from Indiana, the state offered Carrier $7 million in incentives to keep 800 of them. And here in Florida, there’s a legislative storm brewing over economic incentive [...]

What’s Faster and Higher Since the Election, and Where it Goes from Here

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says he has noticed a pattern since the election: economic growth is accelerating and interest rates are rising. 90.7’s Nicole Darden-Creston asked him if that’s likely to continue. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Initial Retail Reports Come Bearing Gifts

Preliminary reports say Black Friday sales were stronger than expected, mostly due to a surge in on line shopping. Add up the totals between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and retailers say you’ll get higher sales than last year. As economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Darden-Creston, you can learn a lot from retail [...]

Florida’s New Jobs Numbers Slip, But the Sky Isn’t Falling

Newly-released October data for Florida’s labor market shows 5,700 new jobs, a much smaller gain than each of the previous six months. Also, the unemployment rate ticked up a little – by .1 percent.

What Does President Trump Mean For Florida’s Economy?

90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says Florida’s economy could benefit from a Trump administration…depending how quickly he pushes through his immigration and trade policies.

Florida’s Existing Home Sales Stall in September

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that in the midst of all the focus on the election, some important news for Florida’s housing markets was released. As he tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston, drilling down into the details reveals a significantly mixed bag, but the headline is this: sales of existing homes stalled out in September. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& [...]

Why GDP Really Matters To Central Florida

Armed with new reports that say third-quarter GDP bounced back by nearly 3 percent – its best showing in two years – Fishkind states his case to 90.7’s Nicole Creston on the importance of the GDP.

Florida’s Positive Jobs Reports Still Surprise

This is the 74th month in a row that state numbers show Florida’s job growth is strong. You may be getting used to hearing that good news by now…but economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston that even another thumbs-up report has a few surprises up its sleeve. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

The Economics Behind Solar Energy & Amendment 1

In the general election, voters will weigh in on a constitutional amendment focused on solar power, it’s Amendment 1.

Floridians Still Worry Over Economy and Jobs

The latest annual poll of Floridians by the USF/Neilson Sunshine State Survey asked respondents the open-ended question, “What is the most important issue facing Florida?” The top answer was the economy and jobs…even though Florida has seen very strong job growth since 2009. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind explores why Floridians are still concerned, and tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston [...]

Mixed Housing Numbers Reveal Strength in Orlando Market

New housing market data show national numbers are very different from Florida’s. Nationally, home sales, construction and permits all came in lower than expected, and the tight inventory of available homes continues to limit sales in many markets. But sales of existing homes in Florida rebounded last month after dipping in July. So, why the mixed [...]

Jobs and Income Up in Florida

Florida’s August jobs report is out. And while the unemployment rate stayed the same, job growth surged more than three percent over last year. Add the new U.S. Census Bureau report showing median household income up by nearly four percent nationwide, and it sounds like even the most cautious of economists might have cause to burst [...]

Florida Tourism Numbers a Mixed Bag

The latest report from state tourism agency Visit Florida shows 27.3 million visitors to the Sunshine State in the second quarter of this year between April and June. That’s a three percent jump from the same time last year. Sounds like one for the “win” column, but economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston [...]

Florida’s Economics of Immigration

Immigration is emerging as a major topic of this presidential election. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind looks to remove the politics from the candidates’ proposals and examine how they would impact Sunshine State finances. He starts by telling 90.7’s Nicole Creston why immigration is such a big issue for Florida’s economy. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Why it’s a Buyer’s and a Seller’s Housing Market

If you’re looking to buy a house but aren’t seeing a whole lot of options – it’s not you. Well, it might be. As Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Catherine Welch it all depends on what kind of house you’re searching for.

Florida Growing Jobs in Surprising Places

Florida’s unemployment rate held steady last month for the third month in a row. But as Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Catherine Welch, that doesn’t mean job growth was flat. Fishkind says the I-4 Corridor continues to see the strongest job growth in Florida, especially from Orlando to Tampa where more than 100,000 jobs were generated over [...]

Weighing In On the Presidential Candidates’ Economic Plans

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton both gave major speeches last week, detailing their respective economic programs. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Government Spending May Offer Long-Term Help to Economy

A very strong jobs report for July and an upward revision for June contrast sharply with the weak national GDP report that 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind told us about last week. Fishkind says it’s odd to have big gains in jobs with the overall economy growing so slowly. Even with interest rates at historically [...]

Florida’s June Job Numbers are Not as Scary as They May Seem

Florida’s latest job numbers look a little confusing. The state added about 9,800 jobs in June. That equals about half of the average growth for the past six months…but economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston it’s not, well, half as bad as it may sound. Hank’s Highlights: The June data were weighed down by some [...]

Strange Days for Financial Markets Don’t Necessarily Mean Recession

“Unusual.” “Unprecedented.” Even “sort of bonkers.”

How Jobs and “Brexit” May Affect Your Bottom Line

90.7’s Nicole Creston asked him how these cross-currents are likely to affect our economy.
He started with the good news from the jobs report.

The 4 Factors Re-Shaping Our Economy

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there are four major structural changes underway right now that will shape the economic environment over the next twenty years. He tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston about the Big Four and how they will affect us.

Online Privacy and the Economy

Do you value your privacy online? A recent Pew poll says most Americans do, but that they also feel like they’ve lost control of some of their personally identifying information – or “P.I.I.,” as 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind calls it. That’s your name, email address, cell phone number, and so on. Fishkind has a pop quiz to see how much we understand about the intersection of privacy, the internet, and the economy.

Florida Housing Market Surges, With Central Florida At Forefront

Florida’s housing market remains strong, especially in central Florida. But the market has weakened in south Florida. 90.7’s Amy Green talked with 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind about the latest trends.

Central Florida Leads State Job Growth

Florida’s latest jobs report contains good news. Employment is up, and central Florida is leading the way. 90.7’s Amy Green talked with economic analyst Hank Fishkind about the numbers. Hank’s Highlights: For the 12 months ending May 2016, payroll employment rose 264,700. Not only is this very strong – second in the U.S. – but even more [...]

Booming Growth Of Orlando’s Tourism Industry Is Slowing

With the resurgence in consumer spending, 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind predicts continued growth to boost the overall health of the economy. Hank’s Highlights: Retail sales at the national level finally rebounded with a 1.3% gain, alleviating fears about the pace of economic recovery. Prices for retail goods are going down due to competition from [...]

Why Floridians Don’t Feel The Recovery

We’ve heard from 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind that both the U.S. economy and Florida’s look good…on paper. But many people still think the economy is on the wrong track because they’re not feeling the recovery. Fishkind says there are several factors contributing to this disconnect between economic growth and public perception. One is that the [...]

Latest Data Looks Worrisome, But Isn’t So Bad

Last week was not a good one for the economy, according to 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind. GDP growth was just .5 percent in the 1st quarter of the year, down from already weak numbers. The stock market sold off sharply and investors moved money into US treasury bonds…where it’s safe, but lower-yield. But Fishkind [...]

New Housing Data And Why It Matters, Especially In Florida

Housing market data were the big economic news last week. 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind walks us through the numbers, but first, he takes a look at what those numbers tell us and why housing markets are important to the economic outlook in general and particularly in Florida. Hank’s Highlights: Residential construction is a larger [...]

Is The Economy Growing, Slowing Or Both?

New economic reports for the U.S. and Florida are out, and they seem contradictory and confusing. Retail sales were much weaker than expected and the consumer price index went down, but nearly 250,000 jobs were created nationally in the past year and the number of new unemployment claims dropped, too. So, is the U.S. economy growing, or slowing? [...]

The Economics Of A Fish Kill

Residents along the Indian River Lagoon have been cleaning up after last month’s unprecedented fish kill. It may be one of the worst fish kills, but it’s not the first – five years ago, another brown algae bloom not only caused a massive fish kill, but it also destroyed more than half the lagoon’s vital [...]

What’s The Secret Ingredient In Florida’s Juicy Job Market?

Florida’s jobs numbers for February have just been released, and they seem positive. The unemployment rate dipped to 4.9 percent, down a fraction from the month before and well below the numbers from this time last year. The job growth rate ticked up as well…by three percent, which is higher than the national rate of 1.9 [...]

The Economics of the Changing Us-Cuba Relationship

President Obama’s current Cuba trip marks the first time a US president has visited the country in 88 years. The trip comes after more than a year of improving diplomatic relations. Politically, the changing relationship between the US and Cuba is complicated and highly charged. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind is focusing in on the financial implications and how Florida will be affected from an economic perspective. In the short run, he says…the impact will be very small.

On Florida Primary Day, A Look at Trade and Migration Issues

On Florida’s presidential primary day, 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind takes on two big economic issues getting a lot of attention that are important for state finances: trade and migration. He begins his examination of the two with trade. Fishkind says all the presidential candidates have at least some criticism of NAFTA and the pending [...]

The Ins and Outs of Florida’s New Budget Deal

Budget negotiators for the Florida Legislature reached a budget deal late Monday night, hammering out agreement on dozens of spending items. State law requires the budget to be finished 72 hours before a final vote, and this year’s legislative session is scheduled to end Friday. There is some unfinished business, though. 90.7’s Nicole Creston asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind what’s left for lawmakers to talk about, and what’s been agreed upon at last check.

Did Hank Get Housing Right?

A WMFE listener recently reminded 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind of a housing market prediction he’d made four years ago, and the diligent listener checked in to see if it held true. Back in 2012, Fishkind predicted the housing market would recover by 2016. So, has it? Fishkind says yes. Hank’s Highlights: Housing sales levels in [...]

The Importance of Being Tourists

Florida’s tourism numbers are at an all-time high, with 105 million people visiting the state last year. This is a significant increase over the 2014 total of 98.5 million visitors. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the tourism numbers carry an importance for Central Florida that goes beyond their grand scale…however, their sheer size does [...]

Some Uncertainties In Florida’s Economy

Since the beginning of this year, the economy has been plagued by uncertainty – the Dow has dropped eight percent and oil prices are a downward track. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that while the risk of recession is higher now than a month ago, overall it’s still very low. But there are a few [...]

Would Gov. Scott’s Tax Cuts Bring New Jobs To Florida?

The Florida Legislature has to pass a budget for the 2016-17 fiscal year by the end of the session on March 1st. So far, though, there’s little agreement between the House and Senate on Governor Rick Scott’s proposal to cut taxes by $1 billion. The cuts would mostly affect businesses. Scott’s plan would also set [...]

What Groundhog Day Can Teach Us About The Economy Of Elections

Today stands out in the national spotlight for two reasons – first, we have the Iowa caucus results…and second, it’s Groundhog Day! 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says Groundhog Day can teach us a few things about how to view the economics of early primary results. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Behind The Curtain On December’s FL Job Numbers

Florida’s December jobs report is out, and the numbers paint a fairly rosy picture – nearly 21,900 jobs were added across the state and the unemployment rate dipped to five percent. But economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the numbers are a little off, largely due to a record-keeping quirk in the benchmarking process. He tells [...]

The Odds On FL Gambling Laws

The state Legislature is considering Governor Rick Scott’s high-stakes proposal to extend the gambling compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. The compact officially expired last July. In part, it authorized the Seminole Tribe to offer various types of gambling at its seven casinos across Florida. And some games could only be offered at Tribe-owned [...]

Inside 2016’s Uneven Economic Start

Economic data from the first days of 2016 seem contradictory. On one side, there’s the stock market – it had its worst opening week since 2011, down about 6% and losing almost $1.4 trillion in value. On the other side is the nearly 300,000 jobs added by US employers in December…that made for the best year in job [...]

Florida’s Rapid Growth Underscores Importance Of Water Legislation

New data from the US Census Bureau shows Florida’s 2015 population growth accelerating past the 20 million mark. That means Florida was second only to Texas in the number of new state residents. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says while Florida saw an increase in international and overseas migration, the majority of the influx was from [...]

The Economy In The Year Ahead

The Florida economy got cooking this year – tourism is up, unemployment went down. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind checked in with 90.7’s Catherine Welch about the year ahead, but before they look forward, they look back.

What The Fed, Congress & FL Did To Affect The Economy

The Federal Reserve raised interest rates, Congress passed a budget, and Florida released its latest employment numbers last week. That’s kept economic analyst Hank Fishkind busy. 90.7’s Catherine Welch caught up with him to talk about the affects we’ll feel here in central Florida.

Holiday Retail Numbers May Be Both Naughty And Nice

This time of year is usually good for retail sales. But the November numbers have just come out, and 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that at just a .2% gain, they are weak for the fourth straight month. While that looks worrisome, he says, the retail numbers are much better once gas prices and auto sales [...]

Why Does Central FL Have Both High Poverty Rates And High Job Growth?

There are now about 350,000 people in central Florida living in poverty. The local poverty rate of 16.2 percent is just above the national average, and it has jumped nearly five percent since 2009 – the depths of the Great Recession. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the high poverty rates were unexpected given the area’s booming job growth, and he explores with 90.7’s Nicole Creston the possible factors behind the numbers.

Does Gov. Scott’s Budget Add Up?

Gov. Rick Scott has crafted a budget that makes cuts in business taxes and healthcare, but boosts education spending. 90.7’s Catherine Welch caught up with economic analyst, Hank Fishkind, who has been combing the budget and counting the dollars. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Has Florida’s Job Growth Reached A Plateau?

The latest employment data for Florida shows growth in jobs and income.  Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there were gains in retail sales, hospitality and tourism as the holiday season ramps up. He told 90.7’s Nicole Creston that while job growth overall is strong, it’s slower than last year…and he wonders if Florida’s economy may have reached [...]

Global Warming Will Boost Cost To Preserve Florida Beaches

Florida has more miles of sandy beaches than any other state and most countries in the world.

The Lowdown On High Jobs Numbers And Deep Tax Cuts

An upbeat US October jobs report is a preview of coming attractions for Florida. That’s according to 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind. He’s examining both the new employment data and Governor Rick Scott’s billion-dollar tax cut proposal, and what they mean for the state. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

FL Would Benefit From Helping Moms Stay In Workforce

Economic development has been getting a lot of attention from Florida lawmakers lately, with Governor Rick Scott asking the legislature for another $250 million dollars to continue luring companies to the state. Florida also uses tourism development taxes, public/private partnerships, and other programs to boost the state’s economy and create jobs. And 90.7’s economic analyst [...]

The Cost Of EPA Rules For Coal Power Plants

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi has joined 23 other states in suing the US Environmental Protection Agency over proposed new rules called the “Clean Power Plan.” The plan aims to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gasses by 2030. But Bondi called the EPA’s time frame “unrealistic” and says it would quote “require the use [...]

The Cost Of Infant Mortality

All this week, we’re looking at the state of prenatal care in Florida. In some counties, women lacking private health insurance have little or no access to a doctor. And that got our economic analyst Hank Fishkind thinking. He sat down with 90.7’s Catherine Welch to talk about the correlation between Florida’s infant mortality rate [...]

Are We Recycling Too Much?

90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says recent data reveal some surprising things about the financial benefits of recycling. According to Fishkind, the upshot is that from an economic perspective, we just may be doing too much recycling in most states across the country…including Florida. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Do Weak Job Numbers Mean A Weak Economy?

September’s job numbers were surprisingly weak across the US, according to new employment data. Add to that a less-than-stellar August jobs report, and you may start to wonder about the health of the economy. But economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there’s probably no cause for alarm, because the unemployment data doesn’t tell the same story as the employment data. [...]

Housing Market Recovery Is About As Good As It’ll Get

Florida’s housing markets have rebounded from their lowest points during the recession with higher sales and rising prices, but prices still remain far below their peaks in most areas. That’s according to new data from the Florida Board of Realtors. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says this is as good as the home recovery is [...]

Digging For Gold In FL’s Latest Employment Numbers

Florida’s most recent jobs report looks good overall, says economic analyst Hank Fishkind….but dig into the details, and you’ll find the state’s employment picture is a bit more complex than it first appears.

When Rising Tides Fail To Lift All Boats

Politicians love to point out that jobs are growing in Florida, but what are those employers paying? 90.7’s Catherine Welch caught up with economic analyst Hank Fishkind who has been looking at the numbers trying to square a booming economy with a growing poverty rate.

The Economics Of Hurricanes

With the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina devastating New Orleans and our recent near-miss with Tropical Storm Erika, hurricanes have been top-of-mind for many people in Florida. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there are significant economic lessons to be learned from tropical storms and hurricanes. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

How Local And Global News Impact Your Wallet

It’s been very busy in the realm of financial news, locally and globally. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says three stories stand out as important for Central Florida. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Fact-Checking Former Governors On Economic Policy Claims

While watching the GOP presidential hopefuls in their first big debate last week, 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind noticed a trend. Several former governors claimed their economic policies were so successful in their respective home states, that their economies outperformed the US as a whole. He singled out former Florida Governor Jeb Bush along with Louisiana’s Bobby Jindahl and Rick Perry of Texas for making similar statements.

Florida Can Clean Up Water If L.A. Can Clear Up Air

Sometimes lessons come from unexpected places – and 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind picked up a few while visiting Los Angeles last week. He says after his eye-opening California experience, he returned to Florida with some thoughts on the water quantity and quality issues we face. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

FL Child Poverty Rate Is Not As Bad As It Seems In “Kids Count” Report

The annual “Kids Count” report was released last week by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and it ranked Florida 37th out of 50 states in overall child well-being. Especially dismal was Florida’s child poverty rate – Florida ranked 45th in the nation in that category. But 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells Nicole Creston he believes [...]

New Census Data Shows FL Demographic Shifts

New Census data about Florida’s population growth reveals important details about how the state’s demographics are changing. That’s according to 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind. He says the people who moved into Florida and fueled 2014’s population surge are diverse…it’s where they settled within the state that may tell us something about Florida’s economic future. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& [...]

What Orange Co.’s Property Appraiser Does, And Why He’s Battling Theme Parks In Court

Property appraisers assess the value of home and business properties. That assessment provides the basis for property tax rates.

Five Major Economic Events Shaking Up Central Florida

90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says five major economic events are ready to re-shape central Florida…and they’ve all happened in just the last week.

Analysis Of The 2015 Florida Budget

The new Florida budget is taking effect after a contentious pair of state legislative sessions that came down to the wire…only one of them planned. 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind looks at what’s in store for the 2015 fiscal year. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

What Forces Are Shaping Central Florida’s Growth Explosion?

Growth and development are booming in Central Florida, and predicting how the area will grow is part of the job description for economic analysts like Hank Fishkind. So how does he figure it out?

The Forces Shaping Central Florida’s Growth Explosion, Part 2

Growth and development are booming in Central Florida, and predicting how the area will grow is no easy task. Last week, we heard from 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind about transportation and its role in shaping Central Florida, and how major development often follows new major roadways. But new homes, business hubs, and attractions don’t [...]

Examining The Economics In Gov. Scott’s Orlando ‘Economic Summit’

Governor Rick Scott held an economic summit event last week in Orlando. Most of the speakers were current and former Republican governors who are either declared presidential candidates or possible ones, like Florida’s Jeb Bush, Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, Louisiana’s Bobby Jindal, and Rick Perry of Texas.

Daytona Beach Job Growth Slows As City Wrestles With Its Identity

Florida’s job market is growing fast, and Central Florida is leading the charge…well, most of Central Florida, according to 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind. While Orlando has gained more jobs in the past year than any other metro area in the state, some smaller metros just outside Orlando aren’t faring quite as well.

How Does Florida’s Population Growth Affect Your Financial Future?

Florida’s population growth has been getting a lot of attention since the recent US Census report named The Villages as the fastest growing metro area in the US. Keep reading that Census list, and you’ll find plenty of other Florida cities and counties within the top 50 fastest growing areas, including Orange County.

Extension Of Florida’s Indigent Hospital Care Fund Is A Temporary Fix

The federal government is extending the indigent health care program at the center of Florida’s budget standoff…but that extension is little more than a Band-Aid. That’s according to 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind. He says the $1 billion for the Low Income Pool program, or LIP, may bridge the budget divide between the state House and Senate, [...]

What To Make Of Consumer Confidence

Economists have been predicting big gains and increasing growth in 2015, but now, they’re not so sure. That’s according to 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind, who says new consumer confidence and retail sales numbers are tempering his enthusiasm.

Orlando Tourism Soars…So Why Aren’t More People Flying Here?

Tourism in Orlando is booming. Last year, the number of visitors broke records. Now, International Drive is seeing a renaissance with the opening of the Orlando Eye observation wheel and other new attractions. Universal Orlando is still basking in the magical cash flow from its Harry Potter-themed additions. And 2015 is expected to another record-breaking year for tourism.

Financial Fallout From Florida’s Budget Impasse and Gov. Scott’s Lawsuit

90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind says Tallahassee lawmakers are proving his point that political gridlock over abstract ideas can cause real economic harm.

Florida Budget Standoff Could Rattle Local Economy

There’s a stalemate over healthcare in Florida’s legislature. That means the House and Senate will likely fail to pass a new state budget by Friday, the scheduled end of the legislative session. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the uncertainty created by that kind of impasse can cause a negative ripple effect throughout the economy that [...]

Universal Orlando’s Wage Hike Is Part Of Positive Trend For Workers, Economy

Universal Orlando recently announced a wage hike for starting hourly employees. Base pay will step up from $9 to $9.50 on June 1st of this year, then to $10 in June 2016. Universal’s announcement follows in Walt Disney World’s footsteps. The Orlando theme park giant is also set to raise starting pay for most positions to $10 by next year.

Checking In On Gov. Scott’s Job Creation Record

The Florida House and Senate have passed two very different proposals for a new state budget, and now the work of bridging the $4 billion gap between them gets underway.

Florida’s Revised Employment Numbers Add Up To More Jobs, Better Wages

The revised employment numbers for 2014 are out, and for the most part, they’re better than economists thought…except in Florida, where they’re a lot better, according to 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind.

New Retail Numbers Aren’t As Bad As They Look

The latest numbers tracking retail sales across the nation are out, and they inched down by a little more than half a percentage point in February. That makes three straight months of declines.

How Many New Homes Are Too Many New Homes?

With housing construction booming once again in Florida you’d think there’s no downside, but economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there might be. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind dug into how many people are moving to Central Florida and how many new homes, apartments and condos are being built to accommodate all these new arrivals. He tells [...]

Federal Funds For FL’s Indigent Health Care Dry Up This Year, Unless…

Florida may lose more than a billion dollars in annual federal funding that’s been paying for indigent care at public and private hospitals. The money came from a federal program called the Low Income Pool, or LIP. But the LIP is being phased out in favor of the Affordable Care Act, which Florida rejected.

Better Water Management Finally Possible In Florida

The declining quality and quantity of Florida’s water has been a hot topic for the last few years, from the state house to the court house to your house. But most attempts by Florida leaders to address the problem have faltered, says 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind. That is, perhaps, until now.

Scott State Budget Fails To Meet Floridians’ Needs

Gov. Rick Scott’s $77 billion state budget proposal puts nearly all of a $1 billion surplus toward cutting taxes and raising education spending.

Orlando Leads State In Positive December Jobs Report

New state job numbers show Orlando finishing strong in a December jobs report that’s full of mostly good news. But some areas across the state and in Central Florida are lagging behind.

What Does International Economic Turmoil Mean For Central Florida?

Recent economic reports have been cause for optimism as we enter the new year, showing signs of recovery like dropping unemployment rates and rising consumer confidence. But things seemed to change last week, with trouble in European markets and a dismal domestic retail sales report.

The Quality Of Education In Florida Is Better Than You Think

On Monday, Governor Rick Scott announced his proposal to boost Florida’s education funding. He wants to increase spending to $7,176 per student, about $261 higher than this school year. If legislators approve, overall public school spending would jump to nearly $20 million.

Financial Anxiety In The New Year

Over the past few weeks, 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind has explained how new reports show an improving economy and good potential for a prosperous New Year. But recent polls suggest Americans are still feeling less-than-secure about finances, and less-than-happy with the response from federal and state governments.

Cuba & Florida’s Economy

Impassioned reactions continue to pour in over the political and social implications of President Obama’s plan to normalize relations with Cuba. This week, 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind takes Nicole Creston through the economic implications for Florida and for our region. On the President’s plan: “The changes are going to be modest because the economic embargo still [...]

3-Year Economic Outlook Starts Rosy, Ends Complicated

Over the past few weeks, 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind has explained the host of recent reports that paint an optimistic financial picture for the end of 2014. As the year comes to a close, Fishkind considers the three-year economic outlook for the Orlando area, the state of Florida, and the country. He begins by [...]

Finally, Some Good News About The Economy

After an extended period of slow economic growth post-Recession, some positive news has begun to trickle in, according to 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind. In recent commentaries, Fishkind has told us about great gains in tourism and retail sales, and a big drop in gas prices that’s bringing some relief to consumers. Now, he says [...]

Florida’s Economy Gets Boost From Falling Gas Prices

If you traveled by car over the Thanksgiving holiday, you might have noticed that filling your gas tank was cheaper than you expected. Gas prices are down worldwide, and that may have OPEC in a tailspin but it’s great for Florida’s tourism-driven economy, according to economic analyst Hank Fishkind. This week, Fishkind tells WMFE’s Nicole Creston [...]

Two Competing Ideas for Florida’s Budget

The 2015 Legislative Sessions is revving up, and Florida Republicans continue to control both chambers of the State’s legislature. A new Senate President and House Speaker were elected earlier this month, and committee hearings begin in January.

A Bright Christmas for Retailers

‘Tis the season to go shopping. As Santa and his parental helpers prepare to flex their credit cards, 90.7 Economic Analyst Hank Fishkind is looking at the season’s gift – to the economy. Fishkind tells 90.7’s Amy Kiley that, this year, Central Florida retailers land squarely on the “Nice” list. Hank Fishkind’s economic analysis now [...]

Post Mid-Term Economy

The dust is settling after the mid-term elections. Economic Commentator Hank Fishkind says the post-election outlook is sunny for Central Florida- at least for the next two years. Fishkind also examines how the Republican congress will impact the economy of the US- and the state of Florida. He tells 90.7’s Matthew Peddie the first big test for [...]

What Is Quantitative Easing, And Why Should We Care That It’s Over?

The Federal Reserve Bank announced last week that it’s going to put the brakes on quantitative easing. “QE” is a practice aimed at helping the US economy recover that’s been in place since the Great Recession. This week, economic analyst Hank Fishkind explains quantitative easing to 90.7’s Matthew Peddie – how it works, why the [...]

Economics And Perception

Central Florida’s economic recovery is going well- and so is the rest of the country’s according to Economic Commentator Hank Fishkind.

Economic Policies and Gubernatorial Promises

90.7’s Nicole Creston asked Fishkind if the numbers in Florida’s latest jobs report tell us anything about Scott’s promises or his performance on this issue

Finding Budget Cuts in Florida’s Criminal Justice System

Florida’s current budget of $77 billion included cuts of over $500 million – but is there room for improvement? 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind thinks so. This week, he talks to 90.7’s Matthew Peddie about three areas of budget cuts that could save the state money. He first began by talking about the death penalty [...]

Making Sense Of New Housing Market Data, And Why It Matters To Florida

New reports on the national, state, and local housing markets have just come out, and 90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there are some surprises among the numbers. This week, he walks us through the highlights of the new reports. But first, he explains why housing market numbers – even national ones – are important [...]

Two Reasons Floridians Should Care About International Trade – Part Two

As Florida’s gubernatorial race heats up, both incumbent Republican Rick Scott and Democratic challenger Charlie Crist are promising to increase education spending upon election. But the state’s newly-released budget projections indicate that may be a tough promise to keep without cuts to other state programs or an increase in revenues, according to 90.7’s economic analyst [...]

Politics Versus Florida’s Budget, Part 1

As Florida’s gubernatorial race heats up, both incumbent Republican Rick Scott and Democratic challenger Charlie Crist are promising to increase education spending upon election. But the state’s newly-released budget projections indicate that may be a tough promise to keep without cuts to other state programs or an increase in revenues, according to 90.7’s economic analyst [...]

Two Reasons Floridians Should Care About International Trade

The Federal Aviation Administration delays a low-cost international airline’s application to connect Orlando to a handful of European cities, and Republicans in the U.S. Congress consider letting funding lapse for the U.S. Export-Import Bank. What do these national policy decisions have in common – and perhaps more importantly, how could they both end up directly affecting Central [...]

Florida’s Next Governor Faces Major Economic Issues

Florida’s gubernatorial candidates were officially selected in the August 26th state primary – incumbent Republican Governor Rick Scott will face former Republican governor and current Democratic candidate Charlie Crist in November’s general election. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says whether it’s Scott or Crist, the next governor will face some major financial issues in his first term. [...]

New Housing Data Means Good News For Florida…Mostly

New housing numbers are out and the results are mostly positive, helping to ease some concerns about the strength and longevity of the housing recovery. And that’s particularly good news in Florida, economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston. But, there are a few areas of concern within those numbers that potential home buyers [...]

Florida’s Employment Divide: Why Are Bigger Cities Outpacing Smaller Ones?

A new trend is emerging in Florida’s employment numbers, and it’s caught the attention of 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind. There’s a clear difference in how Florida’s larger cities are faring in terms of job creation and employment and how smaller cities are doing. This week, Fishkind looks at the factors pushing the state’s major [...]

Checking the Math on Healthcare Costs

Recent analysis from the state shows healthcare premiums under the Affordable Care Act could rise in Florida, but White House analysis of the same data shows out-of-pocket costs could drop.  90.7 Economic Analyst Hank Fishkind sorts through the numbers with 90.7’s Amy Kiley.  He starts with the larger question, not of healthcare premiums, but of [...]

Latest Economic Figures Are “As Good As It Gets”…But How Long Will It Last?

August 05, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the latest batch of economic news is about as good as it gets. But, as he reminds us, good times can’t last forever. In fact, he has a prediction regarding just how long the numbers will stay positive and some thoughts on [...]

Is Florida’s Job Growth A Result Of Gov. Scott’s Policies?

July 29, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Governor Rick Scott's re-election campaign is largely focused on job creation, and indeed, Florida has seen significant employment growth in the last few years. But the question of what prompted that growth is a matter of some debate. Scott says his policies are responsible for spurring Florida’s job [...]

An In-Depth Look At Florida’s Job Market By The Numbers

July 22, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Florida's newest job numbers show the state's unemployment rate is higher than the nation's for the first time in more than a year. But economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that's not the bad news it may seem to be. This week, Fishkind digs into the mixed bag of [...]

Crist and Scott on Education Funding

July 15, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist and incumbent Rick Scott have been trading barbs over education spending. Each accuses the other of slashing school funding while in the governor's seat. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind explains how education funding works in Florida. Speaking with 90.7’s Amy Kiley, he first tackles the [...]

It’s Still A Long Climb To A Pre-Recession Economy

July 8, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - The improving employment numbers released last week are the latest in a string of reports that seem to show the US economy on the mend. But economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the big picture is a bit more complicated. Fishkind says that while financial conditions are moving in [...]

Could Too-Slow Growth And Stagnant Wages Be The ‘New Normal’?

July 1, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando -A new economic report shows the U-S economy is still growing, but at a snail's pace. A drop in consumer spending is keeping the nation’s gross domestic product lower than expected, and that has a major impact not only across the country, but on the everyday lives of Floridians. [...]

How Are Florida’s Public Schools Funded?

June 24, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Florida's public education system has been getting a lot of attention in recent months. Schools districts are preparing for sweeping curriculum changes, politicians are staking out election-year positions...and this year's state budget takes effect July 1st with new levels of per-student funding. But how exactly does Florida's K-12 [...]

Florida’s Housing Markets Begin To Balance Supply And Demand

June 10, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Florida's long-suffering housing market is starting to find equilibrium, according to a new Florida Association of Realtors report. 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the state isn’t seeing double-digit leaps in home prices anymore…but the modest, steady increases reported in many areas of Florida are better for the [...]

Census Data Shows More Floridians Choosing City Life Over The ‘Burbs’

June 10, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - New U.S. census data on population growth contains a surprising reversal in the trend of leaving the city for life in the suburbs.  90.7’s economic analyst Hank Fishkind says this new pattern is a sea change for Florida’s largest metro areas like Orlando, Tampa, and Miami. Fishkind begins [...]

State Budget ‘Turkeys’ Aren’t Always Bad Economic Investments

June 3rd, 2014 | WMFE Orlando - Each year, the state budget is scrutinized by watchdog groups for items they call "turkeys," and the 2014-2015 spending plan Governor Rick Scott signed into law Monday is no exception. The group Florida Tax Watch defines turkeys as "legislative projects placed in the budget without proper opportunity for [...]

‘All Aboard Florida’ Project Would Bring Economic Boost to Orlando

May 27th, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - "All Aboard Florida" is a proposed passenger train line connecting downtown Miami and Orlando International Airport. A new economic report by the company behind the project says it will pump $6.4 billion into Florida's economy, with more than $560 million directly impacting Orange County. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind [...]

Lake Nona Tennis Complex

May 20th, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando- The US Tennis Association's new training and performance complex at Lake Nona will help position Orlando as a major sports destination. That's according to 90.7 Economic Analyst Hank Fishkind. The $60 million complex will be the largest in the country when it's finished in 2016. Fishkind tells 90.7's Matthew [...]

Climate Change and Florida

May 13th, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando- This month the White House released its third U.S. National Climate Assessment. It cites climate changes in every region of the United States with impacts analysts say could be dire for the population. 90.7's Economic Commentator Hank Fishkind says Florida is no exception. He tells 90.7's Amy Kiley what [...] Hiring in Central Florida

May 9, 2014 | WMFE, is hiring 1,000 people for its two new distribution centers in Lakeland and the Tampa area. A company spokesperson says most of the staff will be hired once construction concludes, which is expected to be the end of the year. To review the article in its entirety click here. {{ [...]

Education, Simulation Funding Among Standout Bills as Legislative Session Ends

May 6th, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando- Lawmakers in Tallahassee wrapped up their two month session late last week, authorizing a record $77.1 billion state budget. Economic commentator Hank Fishkind tells 90.7's Matthew Peddie a couple bills stand out in helping shape the future of this state's economy: approving in state tuition for the children of [...]

Housing Market Stall Sparks Concerns Over Slow Economic Growth

April 29, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - The housing market has seen a slow recovery over the last couple of years, as the economy inches steadily upward after the Great Recession. But there’s a surprising reversal in the latest housing market numbers. And economic analyst Hank Fishkind says those numbers will have a significant impact [...]

Another Record-Breaking Year for Central Florida Tourism

April 14, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Newly-released tourism numbers for 2013 show that Florida had another record-breaking year for attendance and visitor spending.  Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston about the jump in tourism – including some surprising data, like where most of Central Florida’s visitors come from – and examines the [...]

Pros and Cons of Revamping Florida’s Expressway Authorities

April 7, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - There's a push in the state Legislature to combine some of Florida's county-level expressway and bridge authorities into larger regional governing bodies. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston about the potential benefits and drawbacks of revamping the authorities, which are tasked with building, maintaining, and overseeing [...]

The Villages Tops New U.S. Census Report On Metro Population Growth

April 1, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - A new report from the U.S. Census Bureau had some surprising news about Florida's population growth: the fastest-growing metro area in the country is a retirement community in Central Florida. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston that many areas across Florida made a strong showing in [...]

Orlando’s Job Market Leads State Growth in Adjusted Numbers

March 25, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Last week the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity released the January 2014 job growth numbers and, in an unusual move, revised the data all the way back to 1990.The revisions show employment growth was significantly underestimated in some parts of Florida, and overestimated in others. 90.7’s economic analyst [...]

State Supreme Court Medical Malpractice Ruling Exposes Need for Tort Reform

March 18, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - There's a big change in Florida's medical malpractice laws, and 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind says it's just one part of a bigger issue that ends up hitting many Floridians in the wallet. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Extreme Winters Can Convince Northerners to Move to Florida

March 11, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - If you feel like you're seeing more tourists than usual for this time of year, or it seems more of your relatives from "up north" are deciding to pay you a visit, it's not your imagination. 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind points out that Central Florida's tourism numbers [...]

Five Big Issues for Florida’s 2014 Legislative Session

March 4, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Florida's 2014 legislative session begins Tuesday, and lawmakers will be considering a host of major policy changes. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind gives 90.7's Nicole Creston an overview of five important issues facing the legislature this session, and the impact they may have on Central Florida. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Hospitality Hiring Spree Points to a Profitable 2014 for Central Florida Tourism

February 25, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Universal Studios is hiring about 3,500 people. Walt Disney World is holding a weeks-long online job fair. And economic analyst Hank Fishkind says smaller Central Florida attractions are also hanging up "Help Wanted" signs.  This week, Hank takes a look at the recent hospitality hiring blitz, and talks [...]

Florida Wars Over Water With Other States…And With Itself

February 11, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - The increasing competition for scarce water has re-ignited the decades-long "water wars" between Georgia, Alabama, and Florida. Florida had until Monday to complete the process of filing a new lawsuit with the U-S Supreme Court, and today, the state waits to learn whether the justices will agree to [...]

Florida’s Long-Term Unemployed Affect January Jobless Rates…And Beyond

February 18, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - New unemployment claims soared through January in Florida. 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind says although it's common for new claims to climb at the beginning of the year, there are other factors involved that make this spike in the numbers more significant for the state. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Gov. Scott’s Budget Proposal has Taxes, Spending Galore

Question: What can we expect from this year’s budget proposal by Florida Gov. Rick Scott? Fishkind: Well so far, beyond the tax cuts, which are really the cornerstone of this budget, he’s announced that there will be an increase in transportation spending by about $200 million, from $8.6 billion this year to $8.8 billion, most [...]

Evaluating Governor Rick Scott’s Proposed Budget

February 4, 2014 | Orlando, WMFE - Governor Rick Scott has released his full proposal for next year's state budget, and 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind has been examining the governor's plan. Last week’s discussion focused on the major initiatives in Scott’s budget that were announced before the governor unveiled the entire proposal last Wednesday. [...]

Mixed Results On New Economic Reports And What They Mean For Florida

January 21st, 2014 | WMFE - New economic reports are out, and economic analyst Hank Fishkind says they're a mixed bag for Florida. This week, Fishkind takes 90.7's Nicole Creston through the newest consumer price index, job numbers, and retail sales reports to make sense of the data...and what it all means for Florida residents. [...]

Do Florida’s Tax Breaks Really Attract Businesses to the State?

January 7th, 2014 | WMFE - A new study by the Florida Legislature's Office of Economic and Demographic Research, or EDR, takes a close look at whether the state's incentive programs designed to spur economic development are working. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston that the EDR report evaluates Florida programs that offer [...]

Examining Economic Incentive Programs Used by Central Florida’s Local Governments

January 14th, 2014 | WMFE - Last week, economic analyst Hank Fishkind took a look at a new study examining Florida's economic incentive programs designed to spur development. The report assessed whether these programs, such as tax breaks and grants, were working. This week, Fishkind takes 90.7’s Nicole Creston through economic incentive programs used by [...]

Positive Reports on Economic Growth Put a Bow on 2013

December 24th, 2013 | WMFE - A handful of new economic reports are bringing some glad tidings to Floridians for the holiday. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7’s Nicole Creston that a positive November jobs report, coupled with a surprise revision in the estimate for third-quarter Gross Domestic Product growth, add up to good news [...]

The Economic Impact of Florida’s Changing Water Regulations

December 31st, 2013 | WMFE - Florida is seeing a growing strain on its water supply.  Florida’s water management districts and the state Legislature are crafting major changes to current water regulations, and economic analyst Hank Fishkind says those changes will come with significant financial impacts across the state. This week, Fishkind analyzes the proposed [...]

Key Decisions Coming This Week Impact National, State and Local Economy for 2014

December 17th, 2013 | WMFE - Two key economic decisions are expected this week that will have a big impact on the local, state and national economy in 2014. The U.S. Senate is expected to vote today on a two-year budget deal that would set spending at about a trillion dollars a year. The House [...]

New Three-Year Economic Outlook Paints Brighter Picture

December 10th, 2013 | WMFE - A new analysis of the economic outlook for the next three years indicates that the pace of growth is set to accelerate. This week, 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind gives 90.7's Nicole Creston an overview of the predictions for 2014 - 2016 across Central Florida, the state, and the [...]

Recovery’s Slow Pace Causes Problems Globally, Nationally, Locally

December 3rd, 2013 | WMFE - An increasing number of economists say global economic growth is too slow, and its lethargic pace is causing serious harm at home and abroad. That's according to 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind. He says the damage of a sluggish recovery can be seen not only on a global and [...]

Recovery’s Slow Pace Causes Problems Globally, Nationally, Locally

December 3rd, 2013 | WMFE - An increasing number of economists say global economic growth is too slow, and its lethargic pace is causing serious harm at home and abroad. That's according to 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind. He says the damage of a sluggish recovery can be seen not only on a global and [...]

Florida Jobs Numbers

November 26th, 2013 | WMFE- Florida led the nation in job growth in October. The state's unemployment rate dipped to 6.7% in October from 6.8% in September- and down from 8.2% last year. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7's Matthew Peddie it's a good sign for the Central Florida economy heading into the holiday season. [...]

The Housing Market’s Up…and So Are Foreclosures?

November 19th, 2013 | WMFE - The latest report on foreclosure activity and housing markets appears to be a study in opposites. While the housing market continues to improve, foreclosure actions rose sharply across the state in October. This week, economic analyst Hank Fishkind takes 90.7's Nicole Creston through the numbers, and looks at how [...]

What New National Numbers Say About Florida’s Economy

November 12th, 2013 | WMFE - Two important national economic reports have been released recently, and 90.7 economic analyst Hank Fishkind says they provide insight into Florida's financial future. This week, Fishkind explains what data from the national jobs report and the Gross Domestic Product can tell us about Central Florida and the state, starting [...]

The Economics of Beach Erosion

November 5th, 2013 | WMFE- Beach erosion is an ongoing issue for Florida's coastal counties. For example, a major federally-backed restoration project for Brevard County beaches is scheduled to begin next week, shoring up losses from last year's Superstorm Sandy. Meanwhile, some officials in the Panhandle are asking lawmakers for $30 million from recently-collected oil [...]

Florida Housing Market to Top the Nation in 2014

A recent report from the California-based Home Buying Institute predicts Florida’s housing market will top the nation in 2014 out performing markets out West including Las Vegas and Phoenix.  The report comes at a time when housing inventory in Southwest Florida and other regions of the state is low.  Economic analyst Hank Fishkind recently spoke [...]

The Cost of Living Adjustment

October 22nd, 2013 | WMFE - Now that the U.S. government is back to work, significant economic data is being released again. Financial markets are eagerly awaiting the September employment report, but economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that perhaps more important for Florida is the release of the 2014 Cost of Living Adjustment for social [...]

Flood Insurance

October 29th, 2013 | WMFE- The Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act, which was passed in 2012, began to take effect this month. The Act extends the National Flood Insurance Reform Program for five years- with significant changes to all parts of the program including flood insurance, hazard mapping and flood plain management. Economic commentator Hank [...]

The Health of Florida’s Housing Market

October 15th, 2013 | WMFE - New housing market data is out. 90.7's economic analyst Hank Fishkind says housing is one of the fundamental driving forces of Florida's economy that should not get lost in the drama surrounding Washington's partial government shutdown or debt ceiling deal-making. 90.7's Nicole Creston asked Fishkind what the latest housing [...]

U.S. Economy – Shut Down

The federal government partially shut down today. Over 800,000 federal employees were furloughed and many federal programs were suspended. The economic impact will depend upon the duration of the shut down and its implications for the upcoming vote on the debt ceiling. Click here to review the (PDF) forecast in its entirety. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Economy Might Be a Little Shakier Than We Thought

QUESTION:First of all, let’s talk about the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee – the FOMC. It’s not beginning to taper off its $85 billion per month bond purchasing program. Some economists were a little bit surprised by this. Are you? FISHKIND: I think everybody was surprised. The Fed had signaled that they would begin tapering, [...]

State-Budget Surplus Should be Used Wisely

As Florida anticipates an $846 million budget surplus for the 2014-2015 fiscal year, Governor Rick Scott has been traveling the state to drum up support for tax cuts. Scott says his $500 million tax cut package will promote job creation. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind took a close look at the state budget numbers and Governor [...]

Job Growth in Central Florida

September 24th, 2013 | WMFE- The Fed surprised some economists last week with a decision not to taper off its bond buying program. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the Fed was reacting to underwhelming data on retail sales and job growth. Fishkind tells 90.7's Matthew Peddie slow job growth is a problem for Florida- even [...]

As Property Values Edge Upward, Local Governments Breathe Easier

QUESTION: In Florida, local governments are finalizing their budgets this month for implementation Oct. 1. Hank, can you tell us why state and local budgetary outlooks are important? FISHKIND: They’re important because they’re often the largest employers in most communities. They usually rank one or two in almost half of the counties in the state [...]

A Closer Look at State and Local Budgets

September 10th, 2013 | WMFE - In Florida, local governments are finalizing their budgets this month for implementation October 1st. The new state budget kicked in on July 1st, the beginning of the state's fiscal year, and work has already begun on next year's numbers. 90.7's Nicole Creston asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind how budgets [...]

U.S. Economy – Modest Job Gain

The big news this week was the surprisingly weak August employment report. A stronger gain was expected given rising manufacturing activity, a surging nonmanufacturing service report, and lower unemployment insurance claims. Not only did payroll gains disappoint, but the downward revisions to the last two months shifted the recent trend downward, so the weakness was [...]

Quality of Life often a Delicate Balance

Florida has been experiencing population growth for decades, starting in the 1960s and, with few exceptions, continuing through today. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says as a result, we began to have some conflict between economic and population growth, and the environmental quality in the state. Click here to to review the transcript in it's entirety. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& [...]

Pricing Florida’s Water

September 3rd, 2013 | WMFE- Florida is heading for a fresh water crisis. In a little over 2 decades our thirst for water is expected to outstrip what the Floridan aquifer can provide. Economic Analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7's Matthew Peddie one of the main reasons for over use is that water has been priced [...]

Florida’s Population Growth and Conflict

August 27th, 2013 | WMFE - Florida has been experiencing population growth for decades, starting in the 1960s and, with few exceptions, continuing through today. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says as a result we began to have some conflict between economic and population growth, and the environmental quality in the state. 90.7's Nicole Creston asked [...]

Florida Job Growth on the Rise

August 20th, 2013 | WMFE - Florida's new July job numbers are out, and at first glance it appears the state's recovery has stalled, with the unemployment rate unchanged for the third straight month. But economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there's a reason for optimism behind that headline - job growth is on the rise, [...]

Impact of Rising Mortgage Rates

August 13th, 2013 | WMFE - Mortgage rates are on the rise after months of historic lows. This may seem like bad news for home buyers, but economic analyst Hank Fishkind says looking at mortgage rates without factoring in the bigger picture of a recovering economy only tells a part of the story. 90.7's Nicole [...]

Spring Training Facilities

August 6th, 2013 | WMFE- Osceola County is considering whether to build a $98 million spring training facility for the Washington Nationals baseball team. The stadium would be funded by the county's tourist development tax. The tax is typically five or six cents on overnight accommodation and it can only be used to build convention [...]

Spending on Big Projects Can Pay Off

July 30th, 2013 | WMFE - President Obama is pushing for new spending on infrastructure. During his visit to Jacksonville's Port last week, he said building new roads, bridges, waterways and schools would boost economic growth and job creation. Republicans counter cutting taxes and regulations would be a better plan. 90.7's Nicole Creston asked economic [...]

President Obama’s Plan for Infrastructure Spending

July 30th, 2013 | WMFE - President Obama is pushing for new spending on infrastructure. During his visit to Jacksonville's Port last week, he said building new roads, bridges, waterways and schools would boost economic growth and job creation. Republicans counter cutting taxes and regulations would be a better plan. 90.7's Nicole Creston asked economic [...]

Population and Job Growth by the Numbers

June 25th, 2013 | WMFE - New census reports stretching back to before the Great Recession show how job losses, and their slow return, have affected population growth in Florida. In 2005, 426,000 people moved to the Sunshine State, but by 2009, when the state shed 750,000 jobs, population growth slowed to only 125,000. Economic [...]

What Unemployment Rates Tell Us

July 23, 2013 | WMFE - Florida's latest jobs report came out last week, and the numbers seem to add up to good news for the state's economy. Governor Rick Scott is touting Florida's unemployment rate of 7.1 percent, which is below the national average of 7.5 percent. However, economic analyst Hank Fishkind says unemployment [...]

Will High Gas Prices Hurt Central Florida Tourism?

July 16, 2013 | WMFE - Gas prices have skyrocketed recently, and many Florida drivers are feeling the pinch. Some economists are making dire predictions about the future of prices at the pump, but economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the numbers may not climb quite as high as those forecasts. 90.7’s Nicole Creston asked Fishkind [...]

The Passenger Train – the Oldest New Trend in Orlando Transportation?

July 9nd, 2013 | WMFE - A commuter train between South Florida and Orlando is in the final planning stages and it may change transportation in Central Florida as we know it. The "All Aboard Florida" passenger line is a privately-financed project by Florida East Coast Industries, a company that already owns railroad tracks between [...]

Monetary Policy and Florida’s Economy

July 2nd, 2013 | WMFE Recent comments by US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke about plans to taper off the Fed's extraordinary monetary policy, the asset purchase program designed to stimulate the economy, caused some jitters in the market- interest rates rose, while stock prices fell. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind explains the Federal Reserve was [...]

Addressing Hunger in Central Florida

June 17th, 2013 | WMFE - As the country continues its slow climb out of recession, food insecurity and hunger continue to be big problems. In Central Florida, officials are trying to combat these issues in various ways, like summer programs to feed students who eat free or reduced-cost lunches through the school year. Meanwhile, [...]

Impact of Major Storms on Florida’s Economy

June 11th, 2013 | WMFE- Hurricane season is upon us, and Florida has already seen its first tropical storm. Although Andrea was just a warning shot compared a devastating hurricane like 1992's Andrew, 90.7's economic analyst Dr. Hank Fishkind says a major storm can have a dramatic effect on insurance markets, property values and the [...]

Florida Budget 2013

May 28th, 2013 | WMFE- Florida Governor Rick Scott last week signed a $74.1 Billion budget. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells 90.7's Matthew Peddie, even after Governor Scott cut $350 million dollars in so called "turkeys" from the budget- it's still the largest in the state's history. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Florida’s Business Friendliness

May 21st, 2013 | WMFE- Florida's often touted as one of the most business friendly states in the country- but a couple of recent economic studies cast doubt on that claim. One report, by the Anderson Economics Group ranked Florida's business tax burden one of the highest in the US. 90.7's Economic analyst Hank Fishkind [...]

On Florida’s Rejection of Federal Healthcare Funds

May 14, 2013 | WMFE - Florida's 2013 legislative session wrapped up just over a week ago, but controversy remains over the Legislature's handling of healthcare. Despite support from Governor Rick Scott and the state Senate, the Florida House refused to accept $51 billion in federal funds to provide health insurance to 1.1 million uninsured [...]

An Economist’s View of the 2013 Legislative Session

April 30, 2013 | WMFE - Florida's 2013 legislative session came to an end Friday, with a $74.5 billion dollar budget passed, some significant new laws made, and some major legislation that didn't make it to Governor Rick Scott's desk.  90.7’s Nicole Creston asked economic expert Dr. Hank Fishkind for his analysis of the session [...]

Central Florida Economic News Roundup

April 30, 2013 | WMFE - It's been a busy week for Central Florida financial news, as a new national economic report spells unexpected good news locally, the Florida legislature battles over the future of Medicaid across the state, and Central Florida's tourism-driven economy narrowly avoids a crisis when flight delays brought on by the [...]

Housing Prices Jump in Orlando – What Does It Mean?

April 23, 2013 | WMFE - A new report from the Orlando Board of Realtors shows homes sales up and housing prices skyrocketing in March in Central Florida. Could this be a sign of a stabilizing market after years of being hit hard by foreclosure? Or is the Orlando area headed for another housing bubble? [...]

Local Impact from the Surprise Retail Sales Drop

April 15, 2013 | WMFE - The latest national economic numbers have many financial experts scratching their heads over a retail sales slowdown in the first quarter of this year, especially in March. Consumer confidence slipped, too, according to the new reports. 90.7's Nicole Creston discussed the retail numbers with economic expert Dr. Hank Fishkind, [...]

Best Uses for the Tourist Development Tax

April 9, 2013 | WMFE - Construction on downtown Orlando's Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts got a boost last week when Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs announced she'd be kicking in another $25 million dollars from the tourist development tax, TDT for short, to help the unfinished venue get off the ground. Jacobs [...]

Proposed FL House and Senate Budgets

April 2, 2013 | WMFE - Both the Florida House and Senate have passed their respective budgets for the upcoming fiscal year, and lawmakers from the two chambers are heading for a final budget negotiation over the next 30 days. 90.7's Nicole Creston asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind to break down major portions of the [...]

Revised 2012 Economic Report is Good News for Florida

March 26, 2013 | WMFE - Every March, Florida economists review portions of the fiscal balance sheet for the previous year. This time, experts say they uncovered something surprising: 2012's employment numbers got a bit mixed up, and the revised report shows Florida's financial outlook is a little brighter than it first appeared.  Economic analyst [...]

Florida Population Boom Boosts Economy

March 19, 2013 | WMFE - Newly released data from the US Census Bureau shows Florida's population topped 19 million last year. After stagnating during the economic recession, the state's population growth is now ranked 3rd in the nation after adding more than 235 thousand people in each of the past 2 years.  WMFE’s Tom [...]

Jobs Report Brings Positive News For Florida

March 12, 2013 | WMFE - The February employment report from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics was released last Friday with some good news for the nation. The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to 7.7 percent, the lowest rate since December 2008. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells WMFE’s Tom Parkinson that the report points toward [...]

Impact of Government Shutdowns on Florida

October 1st, 2013 | WMFE- The government has been partially shut down since midnight Tuesday due to the inability of Congress to reach a budget agreement. Tea Party Republicans in the House said they would only approve budget legislation if it included a provision to delay or de-fund the Affordable Care Act. The Senate found [...]

Issues Before the Legislature Will Impact Central Florida’s Economy

March 5, 2013 | WMFE - This morning in Tallahassee, legislators will begin their annual 60-day lawmaking session. They will be discussing a number of issues that will affect taxpayer's wallets and the economy in central Florida. Last week, economic analyst Hank Fishkind examined some of the proposals in Governor Rick Scott’s $74 billion dollar [...]

Gov. Scott’s Budget Proposal Will Impact Central Florida

February 26, 2013 | WMFE - One week from today the state legislature will officially begin its annual 60-day legislative session. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says many of the proposals under consideration in Tallahassee this year will have economic impacts here in central Florida. Next week Dr. Fishkind will discus some of the legislative proposals [...]

Sequestration Will Impact Central Florida

February 19, 2013 | WMFE - The deadline is looming for Congress to come to an agreement on federal spending. If they don't, the so-called "Sequester" will go into effect next week, on March 1st. The proposed federal spending cuts could have dramatic affects in central Florida. 90.7's Tom Parkinson asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind [...]

Commercial Development Boost Limited For Now

February 12, 2013 | WMFE - There has been a boom lately in proposed development projects for Orlando's International Drive area, the tourism hub of central Florida, near the area's major theme parks and hotels. Notably, the Orlando Eye / I-Drive Live project features a huge sightseeing wheel as well as a wax museum, a [...]

Immigration Reform Will Benefit Florida Economy

February 5, 2013 | WMFE - This week, economic analyst Hank Fishkind is advocating immigration reform that he says will help Florida grow. Both President Obama and a group of bipartisan senators are backing immigration reform efforts that include a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants living in the United States. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Lawmakers Should Take Specific Steps to Boost Economy

January 29, 2013 | WMFE - Florida is slowly recovering from years of tepid economic growth. With the annual legislative session just over a month away, economic analyst Hank Fishkind says there are a number of measures lawmakers can take to help boost economic growth. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Health Care Law Will Offer Both Costs and Benefits for Floridians

January 15, 2013 | WMFE - State lawmakers are meeting in Tallahassee this week to discuss how Florida will implement the federal Affordable Care Act. Last week Governor Rick Scott went to Washington to discuss the details with federal officials. 90.7’s Tom Parkinson asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind to explain what the state is planning [...]

Fiscal Deal Will Hurt Low-Wage Workers

January 8, 2013 | WMFE - Congress and the White House reached an agreement at the first of the year on taxes and spending to avert the fiscal cliff. Now that more details have emerged, 90.7’s Tom Parkinson asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind  what impact the agreement will have for central Florida’s economy. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& [...]

Region’s Economy Continued Slow Recovery in 2012

December 25, 2012 | WMFE- As we enter the final week of 2012, uncertainty in Washington over the impending "Fiscal Cliff" is casting a cloud over the nation's economy. Looking back at the past year, economist Hank Fishkind says there were some positive developments and some setbacks. But, he tells WMFE’s Tom Parkinson, that overall [...]

Fiscal Cliff Casts Shadow on Holiday Shopping

December 18, 2012 | WMFE- There's just one week left to finish holiday shopping and it's a busy time of year for Orlando retailers. But as the end of the year approaches, federal lawmakers are still battling over what to do about automatic spending cuts and tax increases that will kick in unless they can [...]

Health Care Act Will Boost State Economy

December 4, 2012 | WMFE - All this week on Morning Edition and on Intersection, the 90.7 News team is taking an in-depth look at health care reform in Central Florida and the implementation of the federal government's new Affordable Care act. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind has researched the costs and benefits of health care [...]

Florida Will Benefit From Increased Energy Independence

November 27, 2012 | WMFE - A new report from the International Energy Agency, a European-based intergovernmental organization, predicts that the US will become an energy exporter within a decade and achieve complete energy independence within 20 years. It's a change that will especially benefit us here in Florida. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true&link=url%3Ahttp%253A%252F%252FNovember%252027%252C%25202012%2520%257C%2520WMFE%2520-%2520A%2520new%2520report%2520from%2520the%2520International%2520Energy%2520Agency%252C%2520a%2520European-based%2520intergovernmental%2520organization%252C%2520predicts%2520that%2520the%2520US%2520will%2520become%2520an%2520energy%2520exporter%2520within%2520a%2520decade%2520and%2520achieve%2520complete%2520energy%2520independence%2520within%252020%2520years.%2520It%27s%2520a%2520change%2520that%2520will%2520especially%2520benefit%2520us%2520here%2520in%2520Florida.%7C%7Ctarget%3A%2520_blank%7C }}

Fiscal Uncertainty Affecting Florida Economy

November 20, 2012 | WMFE - President Barack Obama and Congressional leaders are working to avoid the end-of-the-year crisis that's become known as the "fiscal cliff." Economist Hank Fishkind says failure to deal with this crisis could be devastating for the nation’s economy, especially for Florida because of our numerous military bases and our dependence [...]

Even Northern Hurricanes Affect Florida Economy

October 30, 2012 | WMFE - Hurricane Sandy slammed into the northern Atlantic Coast last night killing at least 15 people and leaving thousands without electric power in one of the nation's most densely populated regions. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Billions Spent on Campaign But Not Much Benefit For Florida

November 6, 2012 | WMFE - Election Day is here and its economic breadth is tremendous. More 6 billion dollars has reportedly been spent during this year's election cycle and much of that money was spent here in Florida. Reports indicate the Orlando market received the second highest level of television ad spending the nation.90.7’s [...]

Foreign Policy Affects Florida’s Economy

October 23, 2012 | WMFE - The presidential candidates met for their third and final debate at Lynn University in Boca Raton last night. The theme for the debate was foreign affairs. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says foreign policy can have a wide array of impacts for us here in Florida. 90.7’s Tom Parkinson asked [...]

Ballot Amendments Have Economic Impact

October 16, 2012 | WMFE - In addition to federal, local and state races, Florida voters will find eleven proposed constitutional amendments on the November ballot. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says many of the proposed amendments have economic implications and he discussed some of them with 90.7’s Tom Parkinson. The conversation started with the some [...]

“Fiscal Cliff” Would Devastate Florida’s Economy

October 09, 2012 | WMFE - One of the major economic issues this year is what's being called a "fiscal cliff." It's a possible collision of two large economic events that could come to a head late this year: the passage of the federal Budget Control Act and the expiration of the Bush era tax [...]

Are Floridians Better Off Now Than in 2008?

October 02, 2012 | WMFE - The presidential election is five weeks from today and the first debate between the two candidates is set for tomorrow night. Much of that debate will focus on the economy, the most important issue for many Americans. Echoing Ronald Reagan’s famous challenge from the 1980 debates, Republican candidate Mitt [...]

Census Figures Show Rising Poverty in Florida

September 25, 2012 | WMFE - The US Census Bureau has released new figures showing a steep decline in median household incomes in Florida. An analysis of the census data also shows about one-sixth of Floridians living in poverty last year. It's the 4th consecutive year that the poverty rate has increased both nationally and [...]

Fed’s QE3 Will Boost Florida Housing Market

September 18, 2012 | WMFE - The Federal Reserve announced late last week that it will purchase $40 billion dollars per month worth of mortgage backed securities. The 3rd round of "Quantitative Easing", or "QE3", is intended to stimulate the economy and bring down the unemployment rate. Some critics are calling the move politically motivated [...]

Tourism Leads Central Florida Recovery

September 11 2012 | WMFE- Florida's economic recovery is sluggish, with boom industries like construction losing jobs in recent years. But the tourism industry is doing well by comparison. Leisure sector jobs have grown across the state in the last three years, accounting for nearly a quarter of job growth. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind tells [...]

Drought Nationwide Impacts Florida

September 04, 2012 | WMFE - We're at the peak of tropical storm season in Florida and we've gotten plenty of rain during the past few months. However, over the long term, the Floridan Aquifer is still shrinking and freshwater supply continues to be a major concern. Meanwhile, much of the nation is struggling through [...]

Who Benefits From All That RNC Publicity?

August 28, 2012 | WMFE - The Republican National Convention is getting underway in Tampa today after being delayed for one day because of Tropical Storm Isaac. Tampa officials and RNC Planners have spent several years and millions of dollars on security, transportation and planning ahead of the convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. [...]

Will RNC Boost Tourism?

August 24, 2012 | WMFE - Between 50,000 and 70,000 people are expected to fill Tampa's hotel rooms and restaurants during the Republican National Convention, which begins Monday. But will delegates make the drive to Orlando and boost tourism numbers? One Central Florida economist says it is not likely. Orlando is not expecting much in [...]

Missions to South America Help Stimulate Trade

August 21, 2012 | WMFE - Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs is embarking on a trade mission to Colombia this afternoon. She is the latest Florida official to visit the region in the name of stimulating trade with that region. Gov. Rick Scott visited Panama and Brazil last year and is planning his own excursion [...]

Romney/Ryan Plan Would Damage Florida’s Economy

Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says that choosing Congressman Ryan, whose proposed budget was passed by House conservatives, creates parameters to evaluate Gov. Romney’s economic proposals. Fishkind tells 90.7's Tom Parkinson that, assuming Romney's plan is similar to Ryan’s Congressional budget, it would likely cut programs that are important to many Floridians and would feature large [...]

Despite Discouraging Reports, Housing is Recovering

August 7, 2012 | WMFE - The US Census Bureau recently released new figures on the health of the nation's housing market. The Census Bureau numbers show sales of new single family homes declining by nearly 8-and-a-half percent for the month of June. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says the national numbers are a meaningful indicator [...]

Scott’s Policies Suppressing Job Growth

July 24, 2012 | WMFE - Employment figures were released Friday for the month of June and the state's overall jobless rate was unchanged at 8.6 percent even though the US as a whole saw employment gains. Florida's economy has generated nearly 67,000 new jobs in the year since June 2011 but that represents a [...]

Central Florida Real Estate Rebounding

July 17, 2012 | WMFE -The Orlando Regional Realtor Association has issued a new report showing prices for existing-homes in the Orlando area were higher in June for the fifth consecutive month and 14% above June of last year. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

Health Care Law Will Stimulate Florida’s Economy

July 3, 2012 | WMFE - Late last week, the US Supreme Court upheld the federal government's comprehensive new health care law, known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Governor Rick Scott says he will continue to fight against the new law and says Florida will not participate in optional portions of the [...]

Changes in Retirement Habits Will Affect Central Florida’s Economy

June 26, 2012 | WMFE - The federal government's General Accounting Office recently released new figures showing some dramatic changes in the composition of the nation's workforce. It's getting older. Many Americans are working past the traditional retirement age either out of preference or necessity. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

European Fiscal Crisis Impacts Florida Economy

The trouble in Greece and other European countries is having an impact here in Florida. 90.7’s Tom Parkinson spoke with economic analyst Hank Fishkind and asked him to explain how the European crisis is affecting Florida’s economy. {{ vc_btn:title=Listen+at+WMFE&style=3d&color=primary&i_icon_fontawesome=fa+fa-volume-off&add_icon=true& }}

FCAT Good For State Economy

June 12, 2012 | WMFE - The FCAT, Florida Standardized evaluation for public school students is getting more scrutiny lately after a round of low reading test scores came out last month. Economist Hank Fishkind says there is a strong economic incentive for the FCAT, and that despite it's ups and downs it makes economic [...]

Robust Season Ahead for Tourism

June 5, 2012 | WMFE - Summer is here and for millions of domestic and international travelers, that means a trip to one of Central Florida's world famous theme parks. Tourism is the linchpin of the region’s economy and summer is the peak season. Economic analyst Hank Fishkind says this summer is shaping up to [...]

Smaller Labor Pool Skews Jobless Numbers

May 22, 2012 | WMFE - The latest figures from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity show Florida's unemployment rate is continuing to decline. The overall, statewide rate for April dropped to 8.7% down from a rate of 9% in March. That statewide figure is the lowest unemployment rate since January 2009 and the state's [...]

Student Loan Debt Crisis Highlights Need for Reform

WMFE - The graduation celebrations are winding down now and thousands of new college grads are entering the workforce. This year's crop of grads is facing an uncertain job market and many are leaving school with tens of thousands of dollars worth of student loan debt. Student loan debt has topped a trillion dollars nationwide [...]

Counties Battle State Over Medicaid Fees

The Medicaid program is at the center of a major battle brewing between Florida's counties on one side and Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Legislature on the opposing side. The state is demanding that the counties pay more than $300 million dollars in disputed Medicaid fees. 90.7’s Tom Parkinson asked economic analyst Hank Fishkind [...]

County Convention Center Must Be Priority

May 01, 2012 | WMFE - The controversy over funding for the Orlando and Orange County venues is in the news again this week. In 2007, the county and city agreed to fund three venues: a new basketball arena, a new performing arts center and renovations to the Citrus Bowl. The funding for all three [...]

Recent Jobs & Population Reports

WMFE - Two recent reports on Florida's employment growth and population are somewhat confusing. The most recent jobs figures showed a month-to-month loss of 39 thousand jobs while the unemployment rate continued to fall but only slightly.' Meanwhile, a new report from demographers at the University of Florida shows the state’s population growing by about [...]