The United Auto Workers (UAW) union is in the midst of an unprecedented "stand-up strike" against the three major US auto manufacturers, presently shutting down US factories in Ohio, Michigan, and Missouri; idling 12,700 union workers; and disrupting other parts of the supply chain. These interruptions come at a time when the industry was just beginning to normalize in the aftermath of the pandemic. Given the scope of affected operations, the economic costs of the strike are high and could well increase substantially if the work stoppages are prolonged and expanded.
On August 30, Hurricane Idalia made landfall as a Category 3 hurricane along Florida's Gulf Coast causing severe wind damage and flooding. The storm continued across Georgia as well as South Carolina and North Carolina as a tropical storm. The human suffering is of paramount importance and should be the primary concern, as well as enormous emotional losses. In addition, the storm will have a significant impact on the economy.
Opioid addiction and overdoses have devasted individuals, families, and communities across the state, nation, and world. The human costs of this health crisis are immeasurable and are the reason that aggressively attacking this crisis is a social and humanitarian imperative. At the same time, there are significant economic consequences and impacts that stem from this massive health issue. The Perryman Group recently estimated the costs of the opioid crisis in Texas in order to provide a perspective on the magnitude of these negative effects.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, part of the federal health emergency regulations prohibited ending Medicaid coverage for individuals. With the end of the emergency, the rules for eligibility for Medicaid in Texas have reverted to those in effect prior to the pandemic.
Texas has obviously experienced a heat wave of historic proportions in the summer of 2023. The higher-than-normal temperatures have created health issues for many residents and impacted quality of life for millions of people. Not surprisingly, the effects do not stop there.
Rail is a crucial component of the US logistics system, and a strike would lead to significant logistical dislocations, exacerbate ongoing supply chain challenges, put additional upward pressure on prices and, thus, do substantial economic harm. Although a tentative agreement was reached between the major railways and union representatives (with the help of Biden Administration officials), it requires ratification by union members before going into effect. One of the largest of the 12 unions recently rejected the package, and concern has been expressed by several others.
On September 28, Hurricane Ian made landfall along the southwest Florida coast causing severe wind damage and flooding. The loss of life and human suffering is of paramount importance and should be the primary concern, as well as enormous emotional losses. In addition, the storm will have a significant impact on the economy, which could rise if there is significant additional damage in South Carolina.
The US Census Bureau recently released the 2020 Census estimated undercount and overcount rates from its Post-Enumeration Survey. The results indicate that the Texas population was undercounted by 1.92%.
The recent invasion of Ukraine by Russia is generating questions regarding how important Russia is to the Texas economy, particularly as policies restricting trade and investment interactions are implemented or contemplated. While no area can escape the near-term disruptive effects related to the supply chain and inflation, the specific effects on business activity within the state are relatively minor. The Perryman Group recently analyzed patterns in Texas-Russia trade and investment to assess the extent of the linkages and related economic effects.
Every day, thousands of trucks cross the Texas-Mexico border, bringing a variety of goods ranging from fruits and vegetables to electronic equipment. Cross-border supply chains are common, and manufacturing facilities on both sides of the border depend on the efficient flow of products across the border. The recent slowdowns due to additional inspections disrupted these patterns, resulting in not only spoilage of perishable items, but also production delays. Given the strained capacity at the border in normal times, it will be difficult and, in many instances, impossible to “catch up.”