Center for Business & Economic Research
Located in the Sam M. Walton College of Business, the Center provides applied economic and business research to federal, state, and local government, as well as to businesses currently operating or those that desire to operate in the state of Arkansas. The Center further works to improve the economic opportunities of all Arkansans by conducting policy research in the public interest.
Arkansas Business Forecast Luncheon
January 30, 2020
Each year, the Center for Business & Economic Research hosts the Arkansas Business Forecast Luncheon, bringing together national and international experts to discuss the economic outlook for Arkansas, the nation and the world. The luncheon draws more than 1,200 business and community leaders. This year, the 26th Arkansas Business Forecast Luncheon was held on January 30, 2020!
The luncheon was held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 30, 2020 at the John Q. Hammons Convention Center in the World Trade Center District in Rogers.
Speaker Presentations are Below
Moderator Claiborne Deming is chairman of the board of Murphy Oil Corporation. Previously, he served as president and chief executive officer. Deming also serves on the board of directors of Murphy Oil, USA and previously served on the board of directors of the Entergy Corporation. He was a member of the Arkansas State Board of Education from September 1999 to June 2002. He is the past president of the 25 Year Club of the Oil and Gas Industry, past chairman of the National Petroleum Council and past treasurer of the American Petroleum Institute.
Global Forecaster Manuel Balmaseda is the chief economist at CEMEX, a leading global building materials corporation. Previously, he served as chief economist for Spain and Europe at BBVA, chief economist for Capital Markets at BBV, professor of economics at CEMFI and visiting researcher at the Federal Reserve Bank in Minneapolis. He is also vice-president of NABE (National Association of Business Economics).
Domestic Forecaster Constance Hunter is the chief economist for KPMG in the United States. She heads the macroeconomic research, analytics and forecasting for the firm and is a member of the KPMG pension advisory board where she advises on pension investment decisions. Hunter works closely with the firm's leadership and clients to identify the inflection points, risks and opportunities that arise in the constantly evolving economic landscape. She is known for correctly calling economic indicators that signal market turning points. Hunter is the president of the National Association of Business Economics.
State and Regional Forecaster Mervin Jebaraj is the director of the Center for Business and Economic Research. He is an exceptional source of business and economics-related expertise that journalists and business people alike rely on to understand how national and regional issues impact Northwest Arkansas and Arkansas as a whole.
Detailed biographies of the speakers are below.
The Center for Business and Economic Research in the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas, in collaboration with the Northwest Arkansas Council, released the eighth yearly State of the Northwest Arkansas Region Report on Nov. 5. The State of the Northwest Arkansas Region Report, first published in 2011, was shared at a luncheon, beginning at 11:30 a.m. at the Northwest Arkansas Board of Realtors Event Center at 314 N. Goad Springs Road in Lowell. Highlights from Mervin Jebaraj, Center for Business and Economic Research, director, were presented.Registration is closed. Event filled to capacity
Speakers included Greg Pogue, of the IC2 Institute at the University of Texas which is a "think-and-do tank" that explores factors promoting economic development and creating programs to promote good business practices around the world, and economist Mervin Jebaraj, director of the university's Center for Business and Economic Research.
Greg Pogue and his team at the IC2 Institute at the University of Texas spent more than a year studying entrepreneurship in Northwest Arkansas. Pogue shared his final report, called "Innovate Again, Innovate Here,". His Northwest Arkansas research and assessment was funded by the Walton Family Foundation.
Economist Mervin Jebaraj, director of the university's Center for Business and Economic Research outlined the economic highlights in the State of the Northwest Arkansas Region Report as well as economic data and statistics from the Center for Business and Economic Research's Quarterly Business Analysis.
The cost for the program and luncheon was $45. Preregistration is required, and the deadline is Friday, Nov. 1. Reservations can be made at the link below or by calling 479-575-4151. Attendees can arrive at 10:45 a.m. for networking.
Gregory P. Pogue
Deputy Executive Director
Senior Research Scientist
The University of Texas at Austin
University of Arkansas
Center for Business and Economic Research
The 25th Annual Business Forecast Luncheon was held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday, February 1, 2019 at the John Q. Hammons Convention Center in the World Trade Center District in Rogers. To register, please visit the Business Forecast webpage or follow the registration links below. For questions or other registration options, please call 479-575-4151. We hope to see you on Friday, February 1st for an informative event.
Moderator Steve Gibbs is senior vice president, chief accounting officer and controller at Tyson Foods, Inc. Steve is responsible for leading, coordinating and directing Corporate Finance and Accounting to provide complete, accurate, timely and actionable financial information that contributes to the achievement of business and strategic objectives.
International Forecaster Carolyn Evans, is head economist and senior data scientist at Intel Corporation. Prior to joining Intel, Carolyn held the positions of Associate Professor of Economics at Santa Clara University, Senior Economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, Senior Staff Economist for International Trade on the President's Council of Economic Advisers, and Economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Domestic Forecaster Ross DeVol is a Fellow at the Walton Family Foundation and is currently transitioning to lead the new Core Economic Institute (a think and do tank) improving economic performance in the center of the United States. The Institute will pursue its mission through independent, data-driven research, action-oriented convening and impactful policy recommendations.
Regional Forecaster Mervin Jebaraj, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research, will provide the usual state and local economic forecast at the luncheon.
Detailed biographies of the speakers are on the Business Forecast page.Thank you for your support of our Business Forecast 2019
Individual tickets are $85 each with the option to purchase a table of ten for $850.00. Pre-registration is required. The deadline for registration is January 25, 2019. Reservations can be made by registering online or by calling 479-575-4151. For sponsorships opportunities, please call our office or complete the Business Forecast Sponsor Packet. Additional sponsorship information can be found at our Business Forecast Sponsor Page.
- State of the Region Report (September 2018)
- Results from the 2018-19 Survey of the Labor Market for New PhDs in Economics (January 2018)
- State of the Region Report (October 2017)
- Results from the 2017-18 Survey of the Labor Market for New PhDs in Economics (January 2017)
- Estimating the Demand for and Supply of Early Childhood Education in Northwest Arkansas (September 2016)
- Examining the Status of African Americans and Hispanics in Arkansas (September 2016)
- Economic Impact of the Clean Line in Arkansas (November 2015)
- 2015 State of the Northwest Arkansas Region Report (October 2015)
- The Economic Impact of the University of Arkansas (February 2015)
- Results from the 2016-17 Survey of the Labor Market for New PhDs in Economics (January 2016)
- 2014 State of the Northwest Arkansas Region Report (October 2014)
- Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey (June 2014)
- Economic Impact of Legalizing Retail Alcohol Sales in Craighead, Faulkner, and Saline Counties (May 2014)
- Visitor Spending at the 2013 Bikes, Blues & BBQ Festival (January 2014)
- Economic Impact of University of Arkansas Athletics (October 2012)
- Revisiting the Economic Impact of the Fayetteville Shale (May 2012)
Our Center in the News
- 5NewsOnline: Walton Arts Center announces new board members, officers
- Talk Business & Politics: Walton Arts Center announces new board members, officers
- Arkansas Business: Jebaraj gives passing grade to CARES Act
- KUAF: U of A Economist: Tourism, hospitality industries will need stimulus to survive
- KNWA: Economist breaks down COVID-19 impact on state's economy
- Arkansas Business: Despite Pandemic, NW Arkansas Real estate remains strong
- Talk Business & Politics: State partners with Baptist Health on COVID testing; Walton says tourism industry 'hardest hit'
- 5newsonline.com: Home improvement and remodeling jobs surge during COVID-19 pandemic
- Talk Business & Politics: Economist: Tourism industry needs a bailout to maintain jobs, quality of life
- KATV: Economist claims state tourism industry needs a bailout to maintain jobs, quality of life
- Talk Business & Politics: Economic worries escalate, fewer plan to travel during Labor Day weekend
- Talk Business & Politics: Fort Smith sales tax revenue beats budget expectations, but budget cuts to remain
- Hot Springs Sentinel-Record: An open letter to Arkansas legislators OPINION
- Talk Business & Politics: Reports show that consumer sentiment is on the decline
- KNWA: Report: Northwest Arkansas real estate strong despite pandemic
- Arkansas Online: Report Northwest Arkansas real estate strong despite virus
- Arvestshare.com: NWA real estate market remains healthy amid pandemic
- ArkansasOnline: Woes not hitting real estate in NW region, report shows
- NWAOnline: Report: Northwest Arkansas real estate strong despite virus
- Arkansas Business: Despite pandemic, NW Arkansas real estate remains strong
- Talk Business & Politics: Northwest Arkansas real estate market shows limited impact from COVID-19 pandemic
- Talk Business & Politics: State applies for FEMA jobless funds, will not make $100 weekly match
- KUAF: Checking in on the Economy in the Second Quarter
- KUAR.com: Checking tin on the Economy in the Second Quarter
- Mervin Jebaraj warned more financial turmoil is in store without Congressional agreement on new pandemic package
- Harrison Daily Times: Jebaraj to speak at economic update breakfast
- KATV: UA economist says unemployment benefits and $600 supplement propped up US economy
- Talk Business & Politics: UA economist says unemployment benefits and $600 supplement propped up U.S.
- Talk Business & Politics: Arkansas' fiscal year off to a good start with 47.2% increase in July revenue
- Episode 79-Mervin Jebaraj is economically in tune with Northwest Arkansas: I am Northwest Arkansas
- KUAR: Arkansas revenue soars above projections in July for good start to fiscal year
- KARK TV: Fayetteville business prepares for shorter Razorback football season amid COVID-19 pandemic
- ArkansasOnline: Walmart pledging increased severance
- KNWA: Fayetteville local business prepares for shorter Razorback football season amid COVID-19 pandemic
- ArkansasOnline: Voters to decide Bethel Heights' fate
- KNWA: Fayetteville local business prepares for shorter Razorback football season amid COVID-19 pandemic
- NWAOnline: Voters to decide Bethel Heights' fate
- NWAOnline: Walmart pledging increased severance layoffs part of US streamlining
- NWAOnline: Walmart cutting jobs, cites "changes"
- ArkansasOnline: Vote in 2 cities near; results to determine Bethel Heights' fate
- KNWA: A Closer look: Arkansas' COVID-19 economic impacts
- NWAOnline: JPs told county's expenses on target, official says virus impact not severe
- 40/29: Fayetteville police department receives many calls on people not wearing masks
- UA Newswire O'Leary-Kelly Named Chair of Walton Arts Center Council
- KUAF: UA Economist grades state, national response to COVID-19
- KNWA: Razorback football season in limbo as COVID-19 outbreak shows no slowing down
- ArkansasOnline: Some Arkansas cities' income climbs despite virus
- Talk Business & Politics: Economist grades state, national response to COVID-19
- 5News Facebook: University of Arkansas economist Mervin Jebaraj gives the federal government a pretty good grade for its economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic
- KATV News: Economist grades state national response to COVID-19
- UA Research Frontier podcast: Will we bounce back Jebaraj analyzes the pandemic's impact on Arkansas Economy
- UA News: New Short talks dives into lasting effects of COVID-19 on economy
- KNWA: International UA students run risk of inability to return to fall classes
- Fayetteville Flyer: Fayetteville fills 10 positions on city boards and committees
- KNWA: Special Report An unprecedented election year
- Talk Business and Politics: U.S. enters recession, ending longest economic expansion in U.S. history
- ArkansasOnline: Silenced Walmart fest echoes in NW
- Private Wealth: Walmart's celebrity -studded annual party is silenced by covid
- KATV: Economist: Stimulus checks, no stay-at-home order softened financial impact in Arkansas
- Talk Business & Politics: Economist: Stimulus checks, no stay-at-home order softened financial impact in Arkansas
- KWNA: We urge the administration to be more specific in its proposals to safeguard the UA community
- BloombergQuint: Walmart's celebrity -studded annual party is silenced by covid
- Financial advisor Magazine: Walmart's celebrity -studded annual party is silenced by covid
- KNWA: Millions of jobs lost in April due to coronavirus pandemic
- ArkansasOnline: Retailers in Northwest Arkansas hoping to stay afloat during pandemic
- Talk Business & Politics: US lost 20.5 million jobs in April as national unemployment rate soars to 14.7%
- KUAF: Economies of smaller cities, rural areas likely hit hardest during pandemic
- 40/29 News: Arkansas relaunches small business grants, additional $40 Million available
- Talk Business & Politics: Economist: 2Q GDP will be much worse than 1Q; no college football will zap regional economy
- Magnolia Reporter: Rural Arkansas will have longer path to economic recovery
- KATV Report: Arkansas' tourism industry handling COVID-19 better than other states
- UA Newswire: Economies of smaller cities, rural areas likely hardest hit by COVID-19
- KNWA: Governor makes false claim regarding COVID-19 testing
- Talk Business & Politics: Arkansas' tourism industry handles COVID-19 better than other states; leisure, hospitality industry most affected in state
- ArkansasOnline: Business leaders hoping U.S. delivers 2nd round or relief
- ArkansasOnline: Arkansas jobless rate rises to 4.8%
- ArkansasOnline: States execs on call with Trump to offer advice on recovery
- ArkansasOnline: Fayetteville housing authority to buy apartments
- NWAOnline: Pool of small-business benefits runs dry while Congress debates
- KNWA: Small business owner gets creative in making cash
- KNWA: Economist, policy analyst say cities need to prevent service cuts
- 40/29 NEWS: Almost 150,000 Arkansans have filed for unemployment
- ArkansasOnline: NW construction sites bustling as workers deemed essential
- Arkansas Online: Construction workers remain at Northwest Arkansas job sites
- KNWA (NWAHomepage.com): A closer look: 16m people are on unemployment due to COVID-19
- 5NEWS: Facts not Fear: UA economist answers your questions about coronavirus in Arkansas
- KNWA/Fox 24: A Closer Look: Businesses work to "make it" during COVID-19 crisis
- ArkansasOnline: Renters, landlords face crunch time as rent, mortgages come due
- 5newsonline: People who receive social security will also get a stimulus check
- KUAF.com: U of A Report examines impact of coronavirus on regional economies
- Talk Business & Politics: Economist: $2.2 trillion spending package will help, but more will be needed
- Talk Business & Politics: Skyline Report: Commercial vacancy rate in NWA fell to 10% in second half of 2019
- NWAOnline: Northwest Arkansas cities, counties preparing for economic toll
- NWA Democrat Gazette: Virus toll projections indicate dire times ahead for state's economy
- University of Arkansas Newswire: COVID-19 Economic Impact in Arkansas
- KNWA: NWA projected to lose more than $200m in sales during COVID-19 outbreak, economist says
- 5newsonline.com: Small businesses to get help thanks to federal stimulus package
- Talk Business & Politics: University of Arkansas researchers offer early estimates of COVID-19 impact to NWA economy
- Northwest Arkansas Business Journal: New home sales in Bentonville School District triple all others in NWA
- Talk Business & Politics: New home sales in Bentonville school district triple all others in NWA
- Fayetteville Flyer: NWA home sales reach record high according to newly released Skyline Report
- ArkansasOnline: Aid to American workers a must, U.S. Sen. John Boozman says: State's lawmakers working on solutions in Washington
- Arkansas Online: Home sales in NWA climb to record level
- 5newsonline.com: Skyline Report: NWA home sales reach record high, lot supply hits all-time low
- NWA Democrat Gazette: Study details struggle of Arkansas' working poor
- Talk Business and Politics: NWA home sales hit high, lot supply falls to low in 2019
- 5newsonline.com: Fayetteville financial experts say stock market fallout is only temporary
- ArkansasOnline: Bentonville expecting growth after new art museum opens
- KUAR: Arkansas Economist: Coronovirus breadth key to impact on US, world trade
- Talk Business & Politics: Economist Coronavirus breadth key to impact on U.S. world trade
- Talk Business & Politics: Resilience in manufacturing could continue but at a slower pace
- 4029 News: Stocks fall in response to coronavirus
- Talk Business & Politics:Under 40 forum focuses on hunger relief, poverty