One group that always has the attention of business and government officials during tough economic times are the economists.
The state’s economic advisers, the Board of Economic Advisers, met Thursday, but decided not to change the current revenue estimate. Current revenue projections for the state for the fiscal year are $5.619 billion.
B.E.A. Chairman John Rainey says there’s little change from last month. Overall South Carolina’s revenue is up 5.8 percent over November of last year. The Budget and Control Board recently issued a cut for state government to reflect the two-percent cut in revenue projected by the board during last month’s meeting.
“Clearly the national economy is improving,” says Rainey. “But South Carolina is moving sideways, and still maybe a little down.”
Rainey says there’s one important wild card that advisers have previously overlooked. “You’ve got all these variable mortgages resetting next August,” he says. “We’re reminded that $40 billion in mortgages will have their interest reset, and if the interest rates are higher that’s more money sucked out of a family’s spending ability.”