Institute For Regional Forecasting

Houston's Resource for Economic Developments,
Trends and Forecasting

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Read the new article published
January 2, 2017:


Houston Update

Dr. Bill Gilmer has written an update on the economic outlook for Houston titled "Houston's Outlook for 2017: Is the Worst Behind Us"

Fall 2016 Symposium

The slides are available in PDF form below:


Our fall symposium "Waiting on Oil Markets: Houston's Economy Seeks Direction" was held on Thursday, November 10, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Houston, Texas. We would like to thank our fall 2016 symposium sponsors and are grateful for their support.

The PowerPoint® slide show along with Dr. Gilmer's notes will be available on November 16 in our publication called "CD-Houston." If you would like to order a CD, please email Patsy Woods or visit our publications page. The cost is $49.00 plus tax for a total of $53.04.

The slides are available in PDF form below:


Spring 2016 Symposium

The Institute for Regional Forecasting just held its bi-annual symposium on Tuesday, May 17, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Houston Hotel. The title of this symposium was “Houston’s Economy Absorbs the Big Blow from Oil in 2015: Who Shares the Pain in 2016?” and was presented by Dr. Bill Gilmer, our director.

Spring 2016 Symposium Video

Our spring symposium was held on May 17, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. The subject of the symposium was "Houston's Economy Absorbs the Big Blow from Oil in 2015: Who Shares the Pain in 2016?"

Watch the Video: 2016 Spring Symposium


Econ 101 And The Oil Markets: Where Are We? And How Did We Get Here?

Forbes Blog Post | By Dr. Bill Gilmer

Forecasting the future is next to impossible. It is hard enough just to figure out where you are and how you got there. But I think we can find some perspective on current oil markets by applying the elementary logic of Econ 101 to the current price collapse. Throw in a few facts about the size of oil markets and how they work, apply a little informed speculation and we actually know a lot about where oil prices are and why – and even where prices are going. Read the full article.

Why Are Oil Prices So Hard To Forecast?

Forbes Blog Post | By Dr. Bill Gilmer

For the oil forecasting community, the most recent collapse in oil prices marks one more failure. The long trail of forecast errors includes the market implosions of 1982 and 1986, not seeing the run-up in commodity prices after 2004 and now missing the end of the same commodity boom. For those of us who depend on oil price forecasts, this is a big problem. Read the full article.

Upstream Bust Meets Downstream Boom In Houston:
The East Side Earns Some Respect

Forbes Blog Post | By Dr. Bill Gilmer

The oil industry divides itself between upstream exploration, production and oil services, and downstream refining and petrochemical operations that turn crude oil and natural gas into useful products. Since 1980, Houston’s upstream sector has been through five major downturns in drilling, all with adverse consequences for the local economy. The current drilling downturn — the worst since the 1980’s – has hit Houston’s West Side particularly hard. Read the full article.

Save the Dates

Dates for 2017 are to be announced.

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Program Manager

Patsy Woods
Phone: 713-743-3869
University of Houston
C. T. Bauer College Of Business
Institute for Regional Forecasting
4750 Calhoun Rd., Room 334
Houston, TX 77204-6021

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