In the wake of a relatively modest economic growth in 2023 and a cautiously optimistic outlook for the coming year, Arizona’s resilience and economic foundations are cause for gratitude, according to Dennis L. Hoffman, director of ASU’s Office of the University Economist. Speaking at the 60th annual Economic Forecast Luncheon in Phoenix, Hoffman shed light on the state’s economic landscape and the potential for transformation in the semiconductor industry to shape its future.
While global tensions, federal rate hikes, and various economic challenges have contributed to a global downturn, Hoffman emphasized the strength of the Arizona economy. Despite a slight slowing attributed to factors like declining real estate sales and eroding consumer confidence, the state maintains robust economic health, with wages surpassing the national average.
Arizona, once a job creation leader pre-COVID-19, has seen a shift to the 29th position in job creation among U.S. states. However, Hoffman highlighted the state’s resilience, having added 512,000 jobs during its post-pandemic recovery. The state remains an attractive destination, ranking as the eighth fastest-growing state and the fourth fastest-growing metro area in the country.
Key industries in Arizona, contributing significantly to the job market, include health care, leisure and hospitality, wholesale trade, professional/tech, and construction. Notably, the health care sector has shown remarkable strength, adding over 17,600 jobs in the past year.
As Arizona positions itself as a hub for semiconductor research and development, Hoffman expressed optimism about the state’s economic future. Friendly tax and regulatory practices make Arizona an appealing destination for businesses, and Hoffman predicts job growth in various industries over the next decade.
While acknowledging the potential for a minor economic softening in the coming year, Hoffman remains confident in Arizona’s spirit and resilience, anticipating a promising economic landscape in the years to come.