Tax Revenues, Retail Sales on the Up?

I like where Robert Bach is coming from with his latest installment of “Good News Friday,” and without a doubt Friday March 11, 2011 was a somber day when we could all have used a bit of good news to lighten the mood.

Bach is a senior vice president and chief economist with Grubb & Ellis, and has a knack for finding the silver lining in the commercial real estate industry, usually just when it is needed the most.

Here is Bob’s take:

State tax revenues are rebounding according to a recent report from the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government. Revenues increased 4.5% in the third quarter and 6.9% in the fourth quarter of 2010 compared with the same quarters in 2009.

 The fourth quarter performance is the strongest growth since the second quarter of 2006, indicating “new strength in state tax revenues.” States will still need to make budget cuts, but increasing revenues will mitigate the deficit problems.

 Retail sales increased a hefty 1.0% last month while core sales, which exclude autos and gas, increased 0.6%. Compared with a year ago, total and core sales increased 8.9% and 5.1%, respectively. Gas prices will be an issue going forward, but consumers are active again.

 Thanks for the Good News, Bob.