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Econ Forum

A Booming Economy

Release Date: 2019-04-19

Yesterday I joined hundreds of community leaders at the 2019 California State University, Long Beach Regional Economic Forum. The forum discussed the historic strength of the economy:

  • Unemployment at a historic low of 4.2%
  • Median household income up 10% over the last five years
  • Median per capita income up 17% over the last five years
  • Billions in new private investment
  • Record cargo volumes at the Port of Long Beach
  • Downtown retail sales of $590 million in 2018, up 21% from 2017 and 150% since 2012
  • Citywide taxable sales up 14.3% in just the last five quarters (LA County overall grew 2.7%)

You can see Long Beach is booming.

These figures and other encouraging numbers come from the Long Beach 2019 Regional Economic Update, which you can read in full here. My thanks Dr. Seiji Steimetz of CSULB, who prepared and presented the report at the Forum.

The Economic Forum has become an important and respected source of crucial economic data and visioning for Long Beach and our region and also an opportunity for our community to come together and work for our common interest in a prosperous, sustainable, and equitable economy. Some of the smartest and most influential leaders in Long Beach share their perspectives on economic growth, housing, labor, technology, and the future of Long Beach, and I’m glad to report the outlook is very good. California, Los Angeles County, and Long Beach continue to show strong economic growth, often exceeding national trends.

Of course, not everyone has benefited equally from this expansion and my top priority as Mayor is to ensure all Long Beach residents share in this prosperity. I’m glad to know the vast majority of the economic leaders in our city share this goal, and it was encouraging to hear equity and justice discussed frequently at the Forum. Together we will continue to make sure our economy is not only strong, but fair.

My thanks to CSULB President Jane Close Conoley for hosting and also for sharing her vision for education and economic growth in Long Beach. I also want to acknowledge John Shen of Sunstone Management; Randal Hernandez, the Chair of the City’s Economic Development Commission; and John Keisler, Long Beach Economic Development Director, for their participation.

A special thanks to all the panel participants:

  • Oscar Alvarado, Century Housing
  • Barret Bradley, CenterCal Properties
  • Becky Blair, Coldwell Banker Commercial Blair Westmac
  • John Drachman, Waterford Property Company
  • Robert Garey, Cushman & Wakefield
  • Roni Gould, Ensemble Investments
  • Kraig Kojian, Downtown Long Beach Alliance
  • Lexey Radcliff, WeWork
  • Sergio Ramirez, City of Long Beach

Our City’s future looks bright and it’s thanks to the commitment and collaboration of so many community leaders and stakeholders, as well as to all the business owners and residents in Long Beach who work so hard every day to serve our city and keep our economy strong.