The positive forecast Alan Beaulieu of ITR Economics shared was welcome news at VMA’s 2017 Leadership Forum.
“You’re going to like 2017 and 2018,” he said. “Consumers are in great shape, retail sales are at a record high level, housing starts are positive, interest rates remain favorable, employment and wages are rising, and banks are lending.”
However, it is not all smooth sailing. One of the concerns for many in the valve industry is the price of oil, which is still hovering around $50. On a positive note, Beaulieu pointed out that the U.S. has 300 years’ worth of oil reserves, whereas Europe has only about 30 years. That gives the U.S. a decided advantage because it is energy independent.