Florida’s economic recovery is shaping up to look like a game of red light-green light. Sometimes it’s on the upswing, and sometimes it appears to be coming to a dead stop. But state economists say it appears the state is gaining economic steam, and that those gains will continue—as long as Florida manages to avoid national and international pitfalls looming ahead.
Florida ended the last fiscal year with about $400 million more dollars than state economists expected. But that almost didn’t happen. Around August last year, the state’s economy got hit by national issues like The European Debt crisis and the federal government’s decision to postpone some budget cuts. Economists says similar threats are looming again this year:
“We don’t know how all that will play out. We’re assuming it’s fairly orderly, and that it won’t have the same kind of disruption that we saw last August, but that’s a disruption and it could change our numbers,” said Florida's Chief Economist Amy Baker.
She and others are watching something called the fiscal cliff. Those are automatic federal budget cuts set to go into effect at the end of the year unless Congress acts. Baker says she doesn’t expect Florida’s economy to stabilize until 2015, or later.