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Kern Economic Journal

The Kern Economic Journal is a quarterly publication (February, May, August, and November). Its purpose is to track and analyze economic trends that affect the well-being of Kern County. In doing so, the journal provides primary data on consumer confidence and business outlook as well as secondary data on a wide range of economic indicators. These data help the community make more informed decisions. Sources of funding for the journal include university contributions and sponsorship fees.

Kern Economic Journal cover photo Quarter 3 2018

Economy at a Glance

The U.S. economy grew at an annual rate of 3.5 percent in the third quarter of 2018, compared to 4.2 percent in the second quarter. The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the increase in GDP reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures, private industry investment, government
spending and nonresidential fixed investment. These gains were however offset by contributions from exports and residential fixed investment. Imports increased in the third quarter after decreasing in the second.

Tracking Kern's Economy

We adjust published data in three ways. Firstly, we averaged monthly data to calculate quarterly data. Secondly, we recalculated quarterly data to take into account workers employed in the “informal” market (i.e., self-employed labor and those who work outside their county of residence). Finally, we adjusted quarterly data for the effects of seasonal variations.

Featured Article: The Coal Industry in 2018

Written by: Dr. Nyakundi M. Michieka, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Economics (CSUB)

17 compared to 48 percent in 2008. Natural gas, nuclear and hydroelectric sources contributed 32, 20 and 8 percent of electricity in 2017 as illustrated in Figure 1. In 2007, coal was the most used source of electric power in 28 states, but in 2017, the number dropped, and only 18 states reported coal as the largest contributor of electricity production (U.S. Energy Information Administration 2018a). Overall, the coal consumed in the electric power sector in 2017 was the lowest amount of coal consumed since 1983 (U.S. Energy Information Administration 2018b).


Featured Article: The Principles of Work Site Team Building

Written by: Craig Kelsey, Ph.D., Professor of Public Policy and Administration (CSUB)

Many managers and leaders have either heard of or even experienced the concept of team building with work site employees and wondered if the concept, process and outcomes would be appropriate for their organization. Some have questioned if this is just a new age trend or a long term investment in organizational structure with positive payouts. If the concept is of interest - important questions to consider include, (1) what are work site teams, (2) why do these teams exist in some work sites, (3) what types of work teams are there, and (4) what work team skills can benefit the employee and organization?

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