A new report from the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization predicts Hawaii’s economy will bounce back but probably not until 2011. The report, titled "After Sharp Drop, Recovery Will Take Time," says visitor arrivals, a key indicator for the state, will decline or flatten through 2010 and unemployment will rise this year and next. The report notes that the visitor industry will languish as the deepest global recession in decades continues to undermine travel demand.
According to the report, Hawaii's visitor arrivals will fall 5.2 percent this year and remain unchanged next year; the number of jobs in the state will contract, with growth not expected until 2011; unemployment will average 7 percent this year (up from the 4 percent average in 2008), and rise further in 2010.
The report does note that because of the rapidity of the economic downturn, forecasts had been difficult and the possibility of a rebound exists