Valley economist: Robust economy not likely until 2015 - East Valley Tribune: Chandler

Valley economist: Robust economy not likely until 2015

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Posted: Tuesday, November 15, 2011 12:02 pm | Updated: 10:50 am, Thu Nov 17, 2011.

Maricopa County's economy is recovering, but at an anemic pace, economist Elliott D. Pollack said Monday.

"There is a boom for Arizona out there somewhere," Pollack told the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. "But not in 2011, 2012 or 2013."

Pollack said a robust economy cannot return to Arizona until the inventory of empty housing units is depleted - and that probably won't occur before 2015. Pollack said the current excess supply of housing units in the Valley is about 50,000 units, down from 80,000 units, but still too high to get construction started again.

Over the last 12 months, the Valley's economy expanded by 38,700 jobs. That is a weak recovery by historic standards, but since the county has shed nearly 250,000 jobs in the previous three years, it is a positive sign, Pollack said.

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