Slowing U.S. Economy, Home Prices Biggest Threats To Northwest Arkansas Growth

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS (TB&P) — A slowing U.S. economy, ongoing trade wars and tariff impacts are the biggest threats to growth in Northwest Arkansas, according to Mervin Jebaraj, director of the Center for Business & Economic Research at the University of Arkansas.

Jebaraj spoke Thursday (May 16) at the Quarterly Business Analysis luncheon in Fayetteville. In his analysis on the U.S. economy, Jebaraj pegs the chance for a recession at roughly 20% this year, without factoring in the latest round of tariffs he says are a wildcard in the economy.

He said U.S. households paid an extra $300 from the 10% tariffs on Chinese imports enacted eight months ago. With tariffs raised to 25% last week, he said the average impact on households will rise to $800 annually. This does not factor in the rising cost of automobiles as tariffs on component parts – especially aluminum and steel – continue.

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