SOURCE: BMO Harris Bank

BMO Harris Bank

August 14, 2014 10:05 ET

Job Growth and Housing Market Will Drive Minnesota Economy in 2015: BMO Economics

MINNEAPOLIS, MN and ST. PAUL, MN--(Marketwired - Aug 14, 2014) -

  • At 2.8 percent, 2013 GDP was well ahead of national average
  • Employment growth driven by professional services
  • Home price recovery continues with homes selling faster and a low vacancy rate

Minnesota's economy continues to grow at a firm pace, according to the bi-annual U.S. State Monitor Report from BMO Economics. Real GDP grew 2.8 percent in 2013, well ahead of the national average. Growth is expected to soften in 2014, but remain above average at 2.3 percent and regain some momentum in 2015 back to 2.8 percent.

"The positive outlook for our economy represents the business-led recovery taking place throughout the state," said Todd Senger, Minnesota Regional President, BMO Harris Bank. "Minnesota has the benefit of diverse companies that are well-positioned to see our economic growth continue."

Job growth is firm at 1.5 percent year over year in the second quarter of 2014, and private-service industries are posting the strongest job growth in the region. At 4.5 percent, the unemployment rate remains well below the national average, and has fallen 0.6 percentage points in the past year. Among the leaders so far during the recovery are finance, professional and scientific services and leisure/hospitality-related industries.

"Construction and specialty trade jobs are bouncing back with the housing market, but the level of employment remains well below pre-recession levels," said Robert Kavcic, Senior Economist, BMO Capital Markets. "Manufacturing employment has risen a solid 2.5 percent in the past year, and has clawed back about half of the recession losses."

Conditions in the housing market continue to improve. Homes are selling faster, the vacancy rate is down to pre-recession levels and the months' supply of single-family homes on the market averaged just 3.5 over the past year.

"While the resale market is improving, construction activity remains subdued," said Mr. Kavcic. "After harsh winter weather weighed on building activity across much of the Midwest early this year, continued steady gains in homebuilding are likely as the housing market recovery continues."

Exports have held steady near record levels in the past year amid stable global demands.

To view a full copy of the report, visit www.bmocm.com/economics.

About BMO Harris Bank
 
BMO Harris Bank provides a broad range of personal banking products and solutions through more than 600 branches and approximately 1,300 ATMs in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Nevada, Arizona and Florida. BMO Harris Bank's commercial banking team provides a combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and mid-market focus throughout the U.S. For more information about BMO Harris Bank, go to the company fact sheet. Banking products and services are provided by BMO Harris Bank N.A. and are subject to bank or credit approval. BMO Harris Bank® is a trade name used by BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group, a North American financial organization with approximately 1,600 branches, and CDN $582 billion in assets (as of April 30, 2014).

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