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Detroit's Comeback - 11/18/16

Detroit is making a comeback.  As reported by the Wall Street Journal, the unemployment rate in the Detroit metropolitan area sat at five point four percent in September.  Detroit was one of the hardest hit communities during the recession, with a regional unemployment rate that peaked above seventeen percent in mid-two thousand and nine. 

General Motors and Chrysler filed for bankruptcy that year.  Since then, the Motor City has been on the mend.  Favorable oil prices represent a driving factor.  The average price of a gallon of regular gasoline has held below three dollars since late two thousand and fourteen. 

Among other things, this has helped to spark renewed interest in pickup trucks and SUVs, helping to spur Detroit’s economy.  Fiat Chrysler producers the Jeep Grand Cherokee in the City of Detroit.  Ford Motor Company builds its extraordinarily population F-one fifty pickup in nearby Dearborn, Michigan.  But what’s good for Detroit has been tough for Houston. 

The jobless rate in Houston is now approaching six percent after being below five percent a year ago and is now above Detroit’s for the first time in more than a decade.  More recently, gasoline and oil prices have been relatively stable, and Houston’s unemployment remain steady during the summer.   

Anirban Basu, Chariman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants. Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes. Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.