The Capitol Record

Washington state is ‘marginally worse’ in latest economic update, economist says

A quarterly economic snapshot released today shows that Washington state is “marginally worse” compared to the last quarterly report in September, said Stephen Lerch, executive director of the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council.

Lerch said personal income and GDP is growing slower than expected in Washington. He’s also concerned about issues outside of the state, such as the slowdown in Europe and the coming “fiscal cliff” that must be addressed by Congress before the end of the year.

On the bright side, consumer confidence is at the highest level since Oct. 2007. Housing is also doing well — home prices have gone up for four months in row in Seattle. Nationally, prices have been on the rise for the last three months.

Revenue tax collections are coming in $37 million higher than expected, but Lerch attributed that to a “timing issue” and said he expects it to be back on track for the next quarterly revenue forecast on Nov. 14. The previous revenue forecast showed the state can expect to collect about $30.5 billion in revenue in the current two-year budget cycle.

The full economic review is available here. TVW video of the meeting is available online here.

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