Iowa employers boast strongest economy in a decade

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(DES MOINES) – The Iowa Business Council (IBC) released its quarterly economic outlook survey today, with three-quarters of the IBC members anticipating higher sales in the next six months. Which means things are looking up.

According to the IBC press release:

“To support this projected sales growth, half of IBC members expect to add to their workforce, and 60 percent project an increase in capital spending. This confident outlook reflects the strength of the current economy, and points to the continued economic optimism from the business community. The IBC members’ confidence is reflected in the survey’s index numbers. The index numbers for the sales, capital spending, and employment metrics are numeric measures that gauge business sentiment within those areas. Reported figures over 50 indicate a positive perspective.”

The IBC says that so far, 2018 has been a year marked by confidence in Iowa’s economy.

But despite the continued growth prompted by the strong economy, three quarters of the IBC businesses cite attracting, developing and retaining a quality workforce as their primary business challenge, which also aligns with the feedback that the IBC members have received from medium and small business owners and community members during its two Vision to Vitality forums held during the third quarter.

The IBC press release goes on to say:

“The Iowa Business Council works to elevate Iowa’s long-term economic vitality through research, strategic thought leadership, advocacy, and transformative initiatives. The council’s economic outlook report is just one example of how our members seek to provide data that can be utilized for business, policy and economic planning purposes in Iowa,” shares Ben McLean, IBC Board Chair and Ruan Transportation Management Systems CEO. “The IBC has a long history of publishing this report, and the collective information provided by our members reflects operations across all of Iowa’s 99 counties. As a result, this information is valuable in identifying trends to determine policy priorities and action items to address areas of concern – or as in recent years – allow us to maintain robust economic growth.”

The Economic Outlook Survey has been completed by the council members on a quarterly basis since 2004. The survey’s projected trends have a state-wide impact, especially when considering that IBC companies employ one in six Iowans.

For more information, including charts related to the survey, visit here