Economic Forecasters Share Optimism - CenterState CEO Celebrates 2023 Economic Forecast Breakfast

Posted on January 24, 2023

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Growth Expected in Region Even as National Economic Challenges Loom

Renewed focus on economic strategy and collaboration critical to preparation for high-growth future

SYRACUSE, NY – CenterState CEO hosted its popular Economic Forecast event to share insights into the region’s economic climate from the perspective of regional business leaders and economic experts.

During the event, CenterState CEO President Rob Simpson highlighted the positive outlook shared by the business community in this year’s Economic Forecast survey, even as the national economy sees challenges on the horizon. The event’s keynote speaker, Luke Tilley, chief economist for Wilmington Trust Investment Advisors, Inc., presented a national economic outlook, with a focus on the impact of inflation on the 2023 Capital Markets Forecast.

“The trajectory of inflation in the U.S. is paramount for the economy, the Fed, markets, and by extension, for investors,” said Tilley. “We think it will continue to slow in the near term, but is unlikely to return to the incredibly low levels that prevailed between the global financial crisis and the COVID pandemic, thanks to labor markets, China’s trajectory, and the energy transition.”

"As we consider our region’s outlook in the near term, there are real and important catalysts, particularly looming national economic trends, to hedge against. However, those pressures do not tamper my confidence for what lies ahead for this community,” said Simpson. “This year’s forecasters shared an optimistic outlook that reflects the significant progress we expect following the announcement of Micron Technology’s historic investment in Central New York. We are now on new path where we must push the boundaries of our imagination to move that needle even further, and boldly ask the critical question, what will we achieve next?  While there are challenges in the short term, if we remain focused on our core strategies and committed to our long-term vision, we will meet this moment and accelerate our progress."

The event marks the release of the 2023 Economic Forecast for Central New York. The report includes the insight and projections of CenterState CEO members and business leaders from across industry sectors, with perspectives on company growth, employment trends, and the expected impacts of Micron Technology’s investment on their own businesses and on the region’s economy.

Through a survey conducted by third-party research firm Research & Marketing Strategies, Inc., forecasters reflected on the growth they experienced in 2022 and shared their predictions for 2023.

Of those surveyed, 55% would rate the current health of the Central New York economy “good” or “excellent.” Additionally, a vast majority respondents, 84.2%, said they see the Central New York economy five years from now getting better.

More than two-thirds of respondents, 69.6%, expect the strength of their business in 2023 will be “strong” or “very strong," with 49% experiencing positive momentum.

Over 70% of respondents expect to the Micron Technology’s commitment to Central New York will impact their business.

Additionally, survey results found:

  • Nearly 70% say their outlook for the strength of their business in 2023 is strong or very strong - similar to last year, when 72% described their business the same.
  • 73% expect sales or revenues to increase in 2023, on average by about 38%.
  • 54% expect to expand products and services this year, down about 2% from 2022.
  • 47% expect to increase capital investments this year, down 2% from 2022.
  • More than 72% expect an increase in jobs and hiring in 2023, up 4% from 2022 projections.

Forecasters were asked to identify pressures that dominated Central New York businesses in 2022, which could impact their growth in 2023. Responses included:

Top 3:

  • Availability of skilled personnel/workforce development (58.9%)
  • Materials/supplies/equipment (34.2%)
  • Employee benefits and costs (32.3%)

Other factors:

  • Hiring and recruiting talent are major impediments to growth. Business leaders commented that their largest barrier to growth is “finding the right people.”
  • Supply chain issues, from paper to computer chips, as well as the high cost of freight, present a hindrance to growth.
  • Not all industries feel they are back to pre-COVID levels; some are still cutting back following COVID-19, or needing to develop new programs following changes brought on by the pandemic.
  • Access to working capital.
  • Fundraising.
  • Interest rates and inflation.
  • Local economic conditions.
  • Mergers and acquisitions.
  • Skyrocketing housing costs; lack of housing for sale.

“While the anticipated economic headwinds are ones we must heed, other economic indicators highlight that the Central New York economy is outperforming the nation and some of its Upstate peers on several measures,” said Simpson. “For example, the unemployment rate for the five county Central New York region was 2.8% as of November 2022, compared to 3.6% statewide, and 3.4% nationally. Central New York’s GDP is about 44.3 billion. According to Empire State Development, starting in 2025 Micron will increase the state’s GDP by 9.6 billion a year, with most of that going to Central New York. That is level of growth that will be unmatched. We have an imperative to plan for this new, accelerated growth trajectory with an inclusive growth mindset.”

The 2023 Economic Forecast for Central New York and Luke Tilly’s’ presentation can be found at CenterState CEO’s website

The CenterState CEO Economic Forecast is presented by M&T Bank and St. Joseph’s Health. Corporate Sponsors are Novelis, Dermody, Burke & Brown; Research and Marketing Strategies, Inc.; and Constellation. Technology Sponsor is Visual Technologies, andMedia Sponsor is Central New York Business Journal.

Today, CenterState CEO also launched Talk CNY, presented by NBT Bank. This new semimonthly podcast series will share the latest news and information on topics ranging from community and workforce development, to policy, and innovation. It will feature leaders from across Central New York to shine a spotlight on the growth and opportunities happening in the region. The first episode, The Central New York Economy in 2023, features an extended length conversation with CenterState CEO President Rob Simpson who shares his thoughts on the regional economy, the optimism expressed by local businesses leaders, and how the Micron effect creates and imperative to take a long-term outlook. Listen on all major podcast platforms or

About CenterState CEO

CenterState CEO is an independent and forward-thinking economic development strategist, business leadership organization and chamber of commerce; dedicated to the success of its members and the prosperity of the region. We serve as an advocate and resource for smart business, catalyze and facilitate regional growth, and promote community prosperity through results-driven partnerships, planning and problem-solving.

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