Central Coast:

Economic Recovery in Motion, but Hyper-Localized by County

From Ventura to Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey and Santa Cruz, the central coast is at the heart of a broader economic recovery as the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on industries, workers and consumers wanes. A brighter future is in motion, yet with the same household affordability challenges in play from years past.

(Register for the 2021 “Your Economy—Your Credit Union” virtual conference on Tuesday, July 20th!)

REACH Central Coast
Presented on May 19 by the REACH Central Coast:

Monterey Bay Economic Partnership
Presented on May 6 by the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership:

  • Slide presentation: See “Perspectives of a Post-Pandemic Economic Recovery” by Fernando Lozano, professor of economics at Pomona College.
  • Archived video: Start at the 55:55 hour/minute mark here (Fernando Lozano, professor of economics at Pomona College).
  • Summary recap: Scroll down to “Economic Overview” when clicking here and click on drop-down arrow.
  • Other slide presentations and archived videos from the event — make sure to click here for: “Fire Resiliency Part 2: Jobs” — Jessica Morse, deputy secretary of forest resources management for the California Natural Resource Agency; “View from Sacramento” — Dee Dee Myers, senior advisor to California Gov. Gavin Newsom and director of the governor's Office of Business and Economic Development; “Organizing Locally for Relief Funds” — Matt Huffaker, city manager of Watsonville and vice chair of the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership Board of Directors; “Green Jobs: A Way Out of the Recession?” — Derek Hansen, co-founder and CEO of Mynt Systems; and Tiffany Wise-West, sustainability and climate action manager for the City of Santa Cruz; and “Regions Rising Together: Salinas” — Carissa Purnell, director of Alisal Family Resources, professor at Hartnell College, and lecturer at Cal State Monterey Bay.

‘REACH 2030’ Collaborative Initiative
A regional economic collaboration between local public and private leaders across San Luis Obispo County and Santa Barbara County:

  • Data center: View local economic and demographic trends through community snapshots, demographics, business data, heat maps, and the local workforce/talent pool.
  • Economic dashboard: for San Luis Obispo County, click here.

Center for Economic Research and Forecasting (Cal Lutheran University)
Matthew Fienup, executive director of the center:

UC Santa Barbara Economic Forecast Project (UC Santa Barbara)
Peter Rupert, economics professor at UC Santa Barbara and director of the forecast project:

Local Experts
Recent articles sourcing miscellaneous local economic experts:

Labor Market Information Division (California EDD)
From the California Employment Development Department: 

  • Choose Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, or Santa Cruz counties: make sure to view 2018 – 2028 projections and highlights (structural economic changes — NOT cyclical fluctuations) regarding employment, industries, and occupations over two-year and 10-year periods. Additionally, you can see current local area profiles and historical data by county here.

California Center for Jobs and the Economy
Search by county (Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, and Santa Cruz):

  • Labor market profiles: To see trends in long-term unemployment, employment and jobs, labor force participation rates, population, age and race demographics, education, and industry/business breakdown click here.
  • Economic indicators: To view trends in housing, wages, energy, and affordability index for homeowners versus renters, click here.

Caltrans’ County-Level Economic Forecast
Released in December 2020 by Caltrans (the California Department of Transportation) — structural economic changes and NOT cyclical fluctuations:

  • You can view Caltrans’ economic, demographic, housing, population, job, inflation, and industry breakdown forecasts for each county. Click on the following counties to view local trends and projections from 2021 – 2025: Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, and Santa Cruz. Or you can click here to view all counties.

Central Coast: Demographics, Labor, Education & Economic Resources
More analysis:

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