San Fernando Valley Business Journal

Cal Lutheran Predicts More Slow Growth

By Joel Russell Friday, December 20, 2013

The Center for Economic Research and Forecasting and California Lutheran University predicts the state economy will continue to lag in 2014.

Economists at the Thousand Oaks school said the state’s gross domestic product growth will be less than 3 percent in the coming year. Job growth will be even less, about 1.5 percent.

California has about 460,000 fewer non-farm jobs than it had prior to the recession, and Southern California is still down more than 360,000 jobs from its pre-recession high, according to the report. And at the current rate, it will take more than two years for the state to reach its pre-recession employment levels.

“This forecast is distressingly familiar,” Bill Watkins, director of the center, wrote in the forecast. “We expect continued slow GDP and job growth in California.”

The report details how California is still recovering from “a massive misallocation of assets that occurred in the housing bubble” and it expects high taxation and government regulation of business will slow down economic growth.

The report didn’t discuss specific locations such as the San Fernando Valley, but in general said the San Francisco Bay area has prospered far more than other regions.

“California is really a collection of regional economies, and these regional economies are remarkably unrelated to each other,” Watkins wrote. “The Bay Area’s economy has been very vibrant, but it’s had little, if any, impact on Los Angeles’ economy and even less on the Inland Empire’s.”