That was the unexpected message UA economist George Hammond delivered in his 2018 economic forecast.
An economist telling us to ignore data and trust our feelings?! Well, it wasn’t that simple, but Hammond noted that the preliminary survey data delivered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and used by state of Arizona in its employment reports don’t seem to add up. For some of the months in late 2017, they’ve shown job losses in the Tucson area compared to the same time last year, at a time when we were supposed to be growing steadily.
“Before you get too concerned about that, I think that those estimates are way too pessimistic,” Hammond told us Friday during a luncheon at the Westin La Paloma. “I think that data, which is preliminary data, is going to be revised up significantly. Once it is revised up, that’s going to square a lot better with the buzz around town about how Tucson is doing.”