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Utah economists predict stimulus bill will provide 'big bounce' to state

Posted at 12:47 PM, Mar 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-10 15:26:29-05

SALT LAKE CITY — Economists predict that the nearly $2 trillion stimulus bill passed Wednesday by Congress will provide Utah with a booming economy as the state has fared much better than most other states during the pandemic.

READ: Utah parents to receive monthly income if stimulus bill passes

These predictions came during a virtual roundtable held by the University of Utah's Kem Gardner Policy Institute.

"Moody's is calling the national economy rip roaring ... I'd maybe characterize Utah's economy in next year, year and a half as rip roaring plus ... as what I think is likely to happen given this level of stimulus," said Phil Dean, a Public Finance Research Fellow at the Institute.

It's anticipated that the savings rate by people on the higher end of the socioeconomic scale - estimated to be well over $1 trillion nationally - will start flowing into the economy.

Those hardest hit, including workers in restaurants, movie theaters and hotels, will see more money flowing in as these places re-open fully for business.

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“I think this was an unprecedented crisis, but I think this is also a crisis where we can point to government sort of meeting the moment with appropriate policy,” explained Darrin Mellot, Director of Research for Americas, CBRE.

Dean predicts that Utah will be back to full employment by the end of next year, though both Mellot and Dean caution that any recovery depends of people getting vaccinated and having the pandemic under control.