Keeping you in the loop.

First Quarter 2017 VBR/EPR Business Conditions Survey Results Released (Jan. 2017)


The VBR/EPR Business Conditions Survey for the fourth quarter of 2016/first quarter of 2017 has been released.  Most responses to the question about the state’s overall business climate outlook were positive (46%).  The remaining responses were split between neutral (32%) and negative (22%).  More than 50 percent of respondents (51%) shared negative outlooks specifically with ease of hiring for available positions, compared to 60% in the previous survey.  The construction sector had the most optimistic outlook on the general business climate, while the health care sector had the least optimistic outlook.  Compared to the national Business Roundtable CEO Survey, Vermont companies are predicting higher capital spending plans, and a slightly more positive employment outlook than their national counterparts. 


For this reporting period, the diffusion index shows a increase in optimism from Q4 2016 to Q1 2017, indicating that Vermont CEOs continue to feel more optimistic about the business climate for the coming three months.  Vermont’s outlook appears to now be on an “improvement” trend given the responses from this and the previous survey, yet continues to demonstrate that economic conditions overall remain somewhat fragile in many areas of the State and in some parts of Vermont economy.


The Business Conditions Survey is conducted in partnership between the Vermont Business Roundtable and Economic & Policy Resources.  The nine question survey of the 97 members of the Vermont Business Roundtable captures a glimpse of how Vermont business leaders see the state economy.  The survey asks business leaders how  their businesses have fared in the recent past and how they view the future.  Sentiments regarding the current and expected business climate and the expected impact on hiring and investing decisions are also surveyed.   Included in the standard survey is a question asking roundtable members for opinions on a current debate in public policy.   Along with providing a snapshot of the Vermont business climate, the survey allows Vermonters to see how these markers change over time.

The press release is available as a PDF below.


NES Financial EB-5 Innovation Summit (Feb. 2017)


EPR's President Jeff Carr will be presenting at the 4th Annual NES EB-5 Innovation Summit on February 9, 2017, in New York City.  Mr. Carr will be addressing the Summit on a panel discussion "Hot Topics EB-5."  The NES financial EB-5 summit brings together leading experts in EB-5 to discuss the latest developments in the industry and to discuss issues relating to the EB-5 Program.

Vermont Emergency Board Presentation (Jan.2017)


On January 19, 2017, EPR President Jeffrey Carr presented the updated consensus economic and revenue forecast for the State of Vermont for fiscal years 2017-19.  Click below to connect to EPR's forecast update report.


Vermont State Emergency Board Meeting: January 2017 Revenue Forecast Update (Jan.2017)



Scott Administration Economist and EPR President and Senior Economist Jeff Carr, along with Legislative Economist Tom Kavet, will present the semi-annual Vermont Macroeconomic and Tax Revenue Forecast to the Vermont Emergency Board on January 19th at 10:00 AM.  The Vermont Emergency Board is comprised of Governor Phil Scott and so-called “money committee chairs” of the Vermont House and Vermont Senate.  The Vermont Emergency Board is charged with adopting a revenue forecast to help guide budget-appropriations deliberations during the 2017 legislative session.   


Livingston Survey—December 2016 Release (Dec. 2016)


Forecasters participating in the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia’s Livingston Survey predict improved output growth over the second half of 2016 as well as an uptick in growth into 2017.  Forecasters project that real GDP (Gross Domestic Product) will grow to an annual rate of 2.7 percent in the second half of 2016 and growth of 2.2 percent in the first half of 2017 and 2.4 percent in the second half of 2017.  Inflation—as indicated by the CPI (Consumer Price Index) and PPI (Producer Price Index)--are expected to rise from 1.3 percent and -1.0 percent in 2016 to 2.4 percent and 2.7 percent in 2017 respectively.  Other economic indicators included in the survey are nominal GDP, nonresidential fixed investment, corporate profits after taxes, industrial production, housing starts, auto sales, average weekly earnings, prime interest rate, 3-month Treasury Bill, and S&P 500 stock price.  The Philadelphia Fed’s Livingston Survey is the oldest survey of economists’ expectations and is published twice a year in June and December.  Bob Chase, senior economist at EPR is a long-standing participant in the Survey.

For further information on the Survey, follow the link below. 


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