News and Analysis
As Ohio’s economy continues to recover, here are the most recent updates of key economic indicators for the Buckeye State:
- Ohio’s unemployment rate is currently 5.2%, compared to 5.9% nationwide. (Ohio’s unemployment rankings by county can by seen here.)
- Ohio’s labor force participation rate currently sits at 61%, compared to roughly 64% in mid-2019.
- At last check, there were 658,900 manufacturing jobs statewide, compared to more than 700,000 in mid-2019.
Meanwhile, the Back-to-Normal Index — compiled by Moody’s Analytics and CNN Business — shows Ohio’s economy at 95% of its pre-pandemic level. 8/5/2021
Pat Gelsinger, CEO of Intel — a leading semiconductor manufacturer — recently said the global shortage of microchips could get worse this year. Moreover, he told the BBC the shortage could continue for another “year or two.”(Other experts say the crisis could last even longer.)
This recent article in TIME spotlights the complexities of semiconductor shortage. It points out that in 1990, 37% of chips were made in the U.S. By 2020 that number had dropped to 12%. 8/3/2021
The 2022 general election is still 15 months away, but we now have an idea of where the leading candidates for governor stand in the race for campaign cash.
Late last week, the DeWine-Husted campaign reported raising $3 million during the first half of this year, bringing the campaign’s cash-on-hand total to more than $6.5 million. The two challengers in the GOP race, farmer Joe Blystone and former Congressman Jim Renacci raised $258,000 and $22,000, respectively.
Nan Whaley, the only Democrat in the governor’s race so far, reported raising $1.6 million in the first half of 2020, bringing her cash on hand to $1.8 million. 8/2/2021
Democrat Shontel Brown — a Cuyahoga County councilwoman — and Republican Mike Carey — an energy lobbyist — this week won their primary races for Ohio’s two vacant U.S. House seats. The unofficial primary election results can be seen here.
Considering the political makeup of their 11th and 15th congressional districts, both are heavily favored to win in the Nov. 2 special general election. 8/4/2021
OMA Connections Partner GBQ Partners reports that roughly 90% of cyberattacks are caused by human error or behavior. To discuss the need for ongoing security testing — as well as the cybersecurity options available to businesses — the firm will host a complimentary webinar Aug. 26. Learn more and register. 8/3/2021
According to OMA Connections Partner RSM and its U.S. Manufacturing Outlook Index, July marks the twelfth consecutive month of strong confidence in the manufacturing sector, with sentiment now reaching more than two standard deviations above what would be considered normal.
RSM writes: “Should vaccinations overcome the latest surge in COVID-19 cases, we expect these high levels of manufacturing confidence to be sustained, with the potential that stimulus spending and technology investment will provide the basis for further manufacturing gains.” 7/28/2021
Tuesday, Aug. 3, marks the special election primary for Ohio’s 11th and 15th congressional districts. For voters in these districts, early in-person voting continues through Monday, Aug. 2.
In the heavily Democratic 11th Congressional District, 13 Democrats and two Republicans running to replace former U.S. Rep. Marcia Fudge, who’s now secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Bernie Sanders surrogate and former state Sen. Nina Turner, along with Cuyahoga County Councilwoman Shontel Brown — endorsed by the Congressional Black Caucus PAC and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — have raised the most campaign funds, according to reports.
In the GOP-leaning 15th Congressional District, 11 Republicans and two Democrats are vying to replace former U.S. Rep. Steve Stivers, who resigned to lead the Ohio Chamber. According to reports, energy lobbyist Mike Carey — endorsed by former President Donald Trump — and state Sen. Bob Peterson (R-Washington Court House) have raised the most money in this race.
The general election for both districts will be Nov. 2. 7/28/2021
While Ohio’s current legislative session still has 17 months remaining, the next General Assembly already has its first candidate for House Speaker. Rep. Phil Plummer (R-Dayton) has announced he will seek the House’s top leadership role if he’s re-elected in November 2022. Current Speaker Bob Cupp (R-Lima) is term limited. 7/28/2021
This week, Ohio’s U.S Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH), along with U.S. Reps. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) and Tim Ryan (D-OH), wrote to Department of Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, urging her to look into the anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders on steel trailer wheels from China.
According to a news release, the lawmakers are concerned China is attempting to work around these orders by nominally moving production to a third country, undermining U.S. trade laws and hurting Ohio manufacturers. 7/29/2021
This week, the U.S. Senate voted 67-32 to take the first procedural step toward debating a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill, which includes funding for roads, bridges, broadband, and other physical infrastructure. Ohio’s U.S. Sen. Rob Portman has served as the GOP’s chief negotiator on the bill.
National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons called the vote “history in the making” and he urged both parties to get a final bill passed.
The bipartisan bill is the first of a pair of proposals. The other is a sweeping $3.5 trillion “human infrastructure” package that faces strong opposition from Republicans and dissent among moderate Democrats, Reuters reports. 7/29/2021