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Johnson County’s economic future is looking good

By Jill Penley

Reports recently released are a cause for optimism in the entire State of Tennessee including Johnson County. The University of Tennessee’s Center for Business and Economic Research predicts Tennessee’s economy will continue to grow through at least 2020.
As part of the annual economic report, Matt Murray, University of Tennessee Economist, said the economy of the Volunteer State remains robust and likely to continue to remain strong.
“Johnson County is also expecting an upward movement in economic growth,” said Mayor Mike Taylor, “The county will continue to work toward attracting new businesses and touting all the area has to offer to boost tourism.”
The unemployment rate is a very important economic indicator, and the county continues to decrease in unemployment as December’s rate dropped to 3.1 percent, down .01 percent from November of 2018, according to the United States Federal Reserve.
Historically, unemployment rate in Johnson County, TN reached a record high of 22.10 in October of 1995 and a record low of 2.90 in April of 2018.
“Historically, low unemployment rates and increases in both job growth and per capita personal income are all indicators that prove how well Tennessee’s economy performed in 2018,” said Bob Rolfe, commissioner of Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development.
Economists and investors as indicators of economic stability and growth also closely watch real estate indexes and home prices.
According to the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors’ monthly trends report, 496 single-family homes sold in November, up 7.6 percent from the same month last year. The report, which examines sales in 11 counties in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, showed 5,777 home closings for the year through November, 165 more for the same period in 2017.
Last year posted a record for the region when homes sales topped $1 billion for the first time in a single year.
Sullivan, Hawkins, Johnson and Lee counties led local markets for increasing their market share last year according to the Northeast Tennessee Association of REALTORS (NETAR).
Market share, a key indicator of market competitiveness, is supplemented by changes in sales revenue. It can reportedly assist consumers and real estate professionals in evaluating primary and selective demand in a market. That is, it enables them to judge not only total market growth or decline but
also trends in customers’ selections among other markets.
Economists predict around 43,000 new jobs will come to Tennessee in 2019 and the state’s gross domestic product to increase 2.6 percent over the next year.