Institute For Regional Forecasting

Houston's Resource for Economic Developments,
Trends and Forecasting

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Spring 2016 Symposium Registration Open

Our spring symposium "Houston's Economy Absorbs the Big Blow from Oil in 2015: Who Shares the Pain in 2016?" is scheduled for Tuesday, May 17, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, 1200 Louisiana Street, Houston, Texas. Dr. Bill Gilmer, Director of the Institute for Regional Forecasting, will be our speaker. For more information regarding the topic of discussion, please visit our symposium information page. Please register online or call us at 713-743-3869. Early bird pricing for individual seating has been extended though 5 p.m. on April 29, 2016. We would like to thank our spring 2016 symposium sponsors and are grateful for their support.


Read the new article published
March 10, 2016:

Revised Employment Data Confirm Houston’s Slow-Growth Trajectory

Houston Update

Dr. Bill Gilmer has written an update on the economic outlook for Houston titled "Revised Employment Data Confirm Houston’s Slow-Growth Trajectory."


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.


Fall 2015 Symposium Video

Our fall symposium was held on November 12, 2015, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. The subject of the symposium was "Houston Job Growth Stumbles As Oil Markets Swoon in 2015: Where Now?."

Watch the Video: 2015 Fall Symposium


Texas Triangle: Economic Engine of the Southwest

Read the new article published Feb. 16, 2015:

Texas Triangle: Economic Engine of the Southwest

Just published by the Texas A&M University Real Estate Center: Texas' four largest metros (Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Austin and San Antonio) function as one large economic entity with each playing complementary roles. Together, they represent 68 percent of Texas jobs and 73 percent of the state's income.


Save the Dates

We have finalized the dates for our 2016 symposia. Both will be held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, 1200 Louisiana, Houston, Texas in the Imperial Ballroom. The symposium topics will be announced at a later date along with registration information, but please make sure you save the date on your calendar:

  • Tuesday, May 17, 2016
  • Thursday, November 10, 2016 (tentative)

Contact Us

Program Manager

Patsy Woods
Phone: 713-743-3869
Email: pwoods@uh.edu
University of Houston
C. T. Bauer College Of Business
Institute for Regional Forecasting
4750 Calhoun Rd., Room 334
Houston, TX 77204-6021
www.bauer.uh.edu/irf

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Patsy Woods
Program Manager
Phone: 713-743-3869
Email: pwoods@uh.edu

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Jessica Navarro
Director, Communications
Phone: 713-743-4348
Email: jnavarro@bauer.uh.edu