US Economy

U.S. economy has been slowly growing since the spring of 1991, growth increased
in 1997 when real gross domestic product rose 3.9 percent from an increase of

2.8 percent in 1996. At the same time inflation in 1997 fell to 2.3 percent
decreasing the cost of living. Payroll jobs rose from 121.14 million in January
to 124.29 million in December and the national unemployment rate declined over
the year by .7%. This combination of events was good news for the businesses and
the general public because it increased wealth and lowered prices. On July

2,1997 Thailand started a crisis in Asia which effected U.S. exports to the
region. U.S. exports to Asia represent 30% of total exports but were cut in half
to 13.4% in 1997. The interest declines offset some of the drag on the American
economy from the reduced exports by concentration on construction and real
estate. Asia crisis was a threat to the U.S. economy but a strong dollar and the
reduced commodity demand helped to keep the low inflation period. In 1998 the
economy experienced further acceleration growth, unemployment decreased faster
to lows not seen in 20 years and the price index stayed the same. Falling
interest rates and oil prices encouraged consumers. Economists still kept a
close eye on the unfolding events in Asia. In 1999 U.S. economy will slow due to
weak markets around the world consumer spending will decrease and businesses
will slow down their investing. Although inflation has not changed the decline
in oil prices and the rising dollar will fade. Nations GDP is excepted to slow
growth near 2% and the world economy possibly will stabilize. Oregonís Economy

Just like the rest of the county Oregon has been booming since early 90ís but
came to a moderate pace in 1997. Oregon only experienced dramatic declines in
lumber and wood products production and employment. In 1997 turmoil in Asia
started which brought concern to the state due to its great exports to that
region. Nike experienced lost sales in Asia and laid of workers in Oregon. Other
big companies like Intel, Mitsubishi Silicon, Hewlett Packard, Tektronix, and

Sequent saw weakened sales and reduced employment. The number of people moving
to Oregon declined and request for residential construction permits were down

2.9%. Oregonís overall tax burden has declined with capped property taxes and
rapid increases in personal income. In1999 economy will continue to grow but
increments will diminish. Employment growth in 1998 was 2.4% and will fall in

1999 to 1.5%. Oregon and the Western Region Oregon along with Idaho and Utah
experienced a decline in the total amount of people coming to their state. In
the region all states saw job gains that were above the national average.

Nevada, Idaho, California, Washington saw the fastest growth while Oregon and

Utah eased. Employment in services the region did better when the nation except
in Nevada, Utah and Oregon which slowed down from 1996. Only mining, military,
and agricultural sectors saw earnings growth below the national figures in

Oregon. Dividends, interest, and rental income rose above the national average
of 4.3% in all the states while transfer payments rose more slowly than the
nation in Oregon, Washington, and California. Residential permits declined in

Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Idaho but increased by 15.3 % in the "Northern 34"
and 4 % increase in Washington. The Asian crisis has not effected other states
in the region as much as Oregon thatís why it is experiencing some economy
growth difficulties.