Forum to discuss improving Mississippi's economy - - Jackson, MS

Forum to discuss improving Mississippi's economy

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By Ashley Conroy - email

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Hundreds of business, government, and education leaders gathered at the 7th annual Senator Thad Cochran Forum on American Enterprise in Jackson on Tuesday.

The event was hosted by the Mississippi Council on Economic Education (MCEE) and the event is designated to recognize Sen. Cochran's efforts in steering Mississippi towards financial literacy and education.

"Our mission of financial literacy and economic education is as important as it ever has been," said Co-Chairman of the event and COO of Parkway Properties in Jackson, Will Flatt.

Keynote Speaker Dr. Scott Anderson, Senior Economist for Well Fargo, says what happens after mid-term elections could determine what happens next for the economy.

"The mid-term elections today, these policy makers in Congress are going to have more of an impact on our economic future than perhaps they have had in a long long time," Anderson said.

Anderson says with the economy in recovery after the recession, the country is still fragile.

"The housing market was the critical piece in this recession that we just went through." Anderson continued, "I don't think we're going to get a strong recovery until we do see more stabilization in the housing market."

As of now, he says 14 percent of homeowners nationwide and in Mississippi to some degree are delinquent on their mortgages.

Though market growth is between two and two-and-a-half percent, he says this isn't enough to exclude the possibility of a double-dip recession.

"There is a pretty high probability that we fall back into a recession, I would say between 20 and 25 percent."

Long time staple in Mississippi, Former Gov. William Winter says educating the workforce and youth about economics will help prevent the chance of another recession.

"That's the measure of an economic system, how qualified how competent how dedicated the workforce is," Winter said.

Meantime, Anderson says next year the economy could see a dip after federal stimulus dollars run out.

Depending on who is elected into Congress he says, could determine whether another stimulus package is presented to the American people.

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