The Fed has hiked interest rates at all but one of the seven meetings of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) in ’22. Economists worry the higher rates will tip the U.S. economy into recession.
If higher interest rates are inevitable, is a recession inevitable? If the U.S. slips into recession, is Houston far behind? The Partnership will answer both questions on Thursday, December 8, when it presents its Houston Economic Outlook for 2023 at the Royal Sonesta Hotel.
The program begins at 10:30 a.m. with a Business Expo and networking event. A few booths are still available. Organizations that would like to exhibit should reach out to Samantha Hodges (email@example.com) or Mikayla Collins (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Doors to the ballroom open at 11:45 a.m. with lunch served at noon. A discussion among experts from industries key to the region’s growth begins at 12:30. This year’s panelists and the industries they represent are:
Health Care: Doug Lawson, President and CEO, St. Luke's Health. St. Luke’s Health is comprised of 16 hospitals throughout southeast Texas, including the research and teaching hospital for Baylor College of Medicine.
Finance: Isaac Johnson, President & CEO, TDECU. He oversees Houston’s largest credit union, with over $4.3 billion in assets and 360,000 members.
Retail: Armando Perez, Executive Vice President, H-E-B. The well-known grocery chain ranked ninth on Forbes' 2020 list of "America's Largest Private Companies.”
Construction/Engineering: Leslie Duke, President and General Manager, Burns & McDonnell. The firm focuses on the design and construction of high-voltage power, re-fining, chemical, terminal, and pipeline facilities.
Following the discussion, Patrick Jankowski, the Partner-ship’s Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of Research, will share the Partnership’s forecast. All attendees will receive a printed copy at the event.
It’s taken nearly three years, but the U.S. rig count has re-covered nearly all its pandemic losses. Baker Hughes re-ports that 784 rigs were working in the U.S. the week before Thanksgiving. That puts the count just below the 790 working mid-February ’20. It had fallen to a recession trough of 244 in mid-August ’20 before beginning a long, slow recovery.
Production has logged steady improvement as well. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates domestic output hit 11.98 million barrels per day (mb/d) in August ’22, up from the pandemic low of 9.71 mb/d in May ’20. That’s still short of the November ’19 peak of 13.0 mb/d.
Employment is not as far along in the recovery. Data from the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) indicates the state has recouped 84.1 percent of the oil field service (OFS) jobs and 63.2 percent of the exploration and production (E&P) jobs lost in the downturn. Houston lags the state, recovering only 54.5 percent of its E&P losses and 50.8 percent of its OFS losses.
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Note: The geographic area referred to in this publication as “Houston,” "Houston Area” and “Metro Houston” is the nine-county Census designated metropolitan statistical area of Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX. The nine counties are: Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery and Waller.