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16 Things Economic Developers Need to Know This Week

The stories Dane thinks you need to see. June 13, 2024 edition.

Dane Carlson
Dane Carlson
5 min read
16 Things Economic Developers Need to Know This Week

Welcome to this week's issue of What Economic Developers Need to Know This Week, where we explore the evolving dynamics of our economy. 

This week we have 16 tools, stories, graphics, charts, and videos that I think you'll find informative, useful, inspiring, and perhaps even humorous. Some are economic development related directly, and some only indirectly. 🤔

If you're wondering what to do with the info in this newsletter, send something to your board members. It will make you look good!

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1) How normal people think about inflation:


2) Mexico and the US have the world's largest trade relationship. But how big is it really?


3) Amazon has pledged $1.4B to build 14,000 affordable homes in Seattle, Nashville and Washington metro areas. Will private businesses solve the housing shortage?


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4) A fascinating read: More than two dozen policy experts were asked to give advice to the next U.S. president about what policies they would suggest to boost stagnant productivity in the United States, which has been running below 2 percent for nearly two decades.


5) Despite concerns that inflation might be affecting consumers, the American restaurant industry is on track for a record-breaking year: Recent data from the National Restaurant Association shows that restaurants across the country, from fancy places to fast food joints, are expected to make a total of $1.1 trillion this year, the highest ever. The Wall Street Journal also reported that restaurants are the hottest part of the retail real estate market right now.

According to the USDA, 53% of household food spending is now on eating out, compared to 41% in 1997.


6) A typical single-family home in the US now costs over $18,000 per year in "hidden expenses".


7) The NFIB small business sentiment index increased again in May:


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8) How to build an AI data center: This piece is the first in a new series from the Institute for Progress, called Compute in America: Building the Next Generation of AI Infrastructure at Home. This series will examine the challenges of accelerating the American AI data center buildout. Future pieces will be published here.


9) What I'm reading this week: Host Nation: How Governments Regulate Short-Term Rentals for a Happier Community.


10) An excellent call for a value-centric approach to BR&E:

Economic development is about creating lasting value for communities and businesses. By reorienting BR&E programs to focus on meaningful impact rather than mere activity, we can better serve the true purpose of these initiatives. Professionals in the field should be empowered to prioritize deep, impactful engagements with businesses rather than feeling pressured to meet arbitrary meeting quotas.

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