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Irvine Poised for Continued Economic Stability, However, Control Your Enthusiasm for the US

Monday, December 17, 2018

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By Bryan Starr, president and CEO, Greater Irvine Chamber.

As we are about to kick off the new year, the Greater Irvine Chamber has every reason to be grateful for the current state of the city and optimistic about its future. While trends affecting other regions and the nation as a whole may indicate volatility, the City of Irvine remains far ahead of the curve on the issue of economic health because of the diversification of its commercial portfolio. This did not just happen by chance, it was a deliberate strategy set forth by the Irvine Master Plan more than half a century ago. The plan has worked so well that Irvine was this year ranked the top U.S. city for fiscal health by the nonprofit organization Truth in Accounting.

Irvine is an economic powerhouse with 23,000 businesses providing more than 250,000 jobs. With approximately 500 life science companies, Irvine is the third most popular city in California for this segment of the economy. Additionally, Irvine’s information technology and innovation sectors fuel dominance in medical devices, ophthalmology, cybersecurity, software development, and digital media and gaming. And to help young companies launch, our thriving startup ecosystem is supported by accelerators UCI Applied Innovation and OCTANe.

Still, with all the advantages that place Irvine at the epicenter of Southern California’s innovation ecosystem, there’s wisdom in staying informed about what is happening around us, regionally, nationally, and globally, so that we can leverage trends and seize opportunities. To that end, the Chamber annually presents an economic forecast event. This year we are returning to the core to bring business leaders relevant information to help their decision making processes.

Nationally known economist and media commentator Chris Thornberg, Ph.D., founding partner of Beacon Economics, will be the keynote speaker for the Greater Irvine Chamber’s Business Outlook Breakfast on Jan. 10. An expert in economic and revenue forecasting, regional economics, economic policy, and labor and real estate markets, he is the director of University of California, Riverside School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development.

The United States is in the midst of the second longest expansion in the nation’s history at 112 months and counting. Thornberg has pointed out that if it continues through July of next year, the U.S. will officially be in the longest expansion on record. Far from losing steam, the U.S. economy has been on a solid upswing. He said, a deeper look at the data suggests that there are issues to keep an eye on. Thornberg will dive deeper into the topic at the Greater Irvine Chamber’s Annual Business Outlook Breakfast.

Business Outlook will also feature Kate Klimow, chief administrative officer and director of External Relations at UCI Applied Innovation, as Master of Ceremonies, and Chris Schwarz, faculty director, UCI Center for Investment and Wealth Management, will open the event’s main presentations with a financial forecast for the coming year.

Tickets for Business Outlook 2019, held Thursday, Jan. 10,7 – 9:15 a.m., at HotelIrvine, 17900 Jamboree Rd., are $75 for Chamber members and $105 for nonmembers. Table sponsorships are available.

For more information and for sponsorship opportunities, contact Kaitlynn Irvine.

Category: Chamber News, Events, Business News, Economic Development

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