Business & Economy

High Costs and Low Supply from Post-Pandemic Surge to Ease Soon, Economist Predicts

Recent gasoline shortages and big jumps in the cost of living are only temporary, says national economist and Director of UCF’s Institute for Economic Forecasting Sean Snaith. Unleashed pent-up demand, coupled with insufficient supplies to meet the post-pandemic surge, has sent prices soaring. These disruptions are expected to ease over the next few months, along with the upward pressure on prices, Snaith says.

The institute releases quarterly U.S. and Florida economic forecasts authored by Snaith. Just released, this year’s Q2 U.S. Forecast includes national economic analyses and projections.

In this report, Snaith predicts:

  • Consumption spending will accelerate to 7.7% in 2021, ease to 4.4% in 2022, then ease to 2.5 percent in 2023 and 2024. Consumption spending shrank by 3.9% in 2020.
  • Ultra-low inventories and mortgage rates will underpin the housing market. Housing starts will rise from 1.4 million in 2020 to 1.59 million in 2021, then decelerate to 1.32 million by 2024.
  • The headline unemployment rate (U-3) is expected to decline to 3.5% in 2024.
  • Payroll job growth of -5.7% in 2020 will be followed by 3.4% in 2021, 3.5% in 2022, 1.3% in 2023 and 1% in 2024.
  • The U.S. economy, as measured by Real Gross Domestic Product, was -3.5% in 2020, but will accelerate to 6.7% in 2021 and ease to 4.7% in 2022 and 1.9% in 2023. It will rise to 2.2% in 2024.

For a look at the full report, see: business.ucf.edu/centers-institutes/institute-economic-forecasting/.

Erika Hodges and RACHEL WILLIAMS ’15 ’20MA
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