After a hiatus of nearly 4 years, the Wisconsin Department of Revenue has resumed publication of the Wisconsin Economic Outlook, as of yesterday.
Econbrowser readers will recall in June 2016, in response to my query to the WI Department of Revenue about the quarterly Wisconsin Economic Outlook, I received this very polite response:
[T]he report was becoming more irregular, and we have discontinued issuing the Outlook based upon the resources that were involved in producing it. We may still issue special reports from time to time, so please feel free to check our website in the future.
Just like the Brownback regime, which ceased publishing the reports of the Kansas Council of Advisors when the data did not cooperate, the Walker regime stopped releasing reports when Wisconsin embarrassingly lagged the 250,000 new private jobs by January 2015 promise that then Governor Walker had just recommitted to in August 2013.
The current report notes:
The U.S. and Wisconsin economies showed growth during 2018, as the current expansion cycle reached its ninth year. Fiscal stimulus and the federal tax cuts and expenditure bill pushed growth higher in the first half of 2018. Labor markets continue to tighten, pushing up wages. Consumer confidence is close to its all‐time high.
The forecast expects this trend to continue in 2019 at a slightly slower pace, as the housing
market decelerates and the boost from the federal tax cuts fade away. The current expansion will become the longest in recorded history by July 2019. However, there are several downside risks to this forecast. Those risks include a rising dollar, slower world growth, volatility in the stock market, a trade war with China and federal government shutdowns.
How did Wisconsin fare over the past four years in which no reports were published? Here is one pair of relevant figures.
Speaking of Walker’s job promise: the 250,000 new private sector jobs was only achieved in December 2018, nearly four years after the promised date.