JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – With debate over whether the economy is in a recession following a second-quarter decline in the country’s gross domestic product, News4JAX is looking into Jacksonville’s economic health status.
We talked to multiple business owners all across Jacksonville as well as the chamber of commerce and local builders about where the city stands.
Business owners are being affected in different ways. At Cutz-Linez & Trimz Barbershop on Moncrief Road, the owner said the parking lot has been mostly empty on many days as customers hold off on haircuts for more essential purchases.
“You really have to budget your money now, especially in the summertime when kids are getting out of school. People are really taking their money and using it with their priorities. Especially with what they need,” said Cedrick Turner, owner of Cutz-Linez & Trim Barbershop.
Turner said he started budgeting to deal with the slowdown.
“Everybody’s trying to make it, so I try and keep my prices for everyone around here while we stay afloat,” Turner said.
Across town, Pulido’s Automotive on Atlantic Boulevard told News4JAX that inflation on used cars has their automotive repair business booming.
“The economy has gone so bad people are clinging onto their cars. They’re not selling them because they aren’t able to find used cars at a good price, so they’re trying to keep their old cars running. That helps us out a lot,” said Richard DeVaughn.
The Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce painted a rosier picture of Jacksonville’s economic position. This is a statement the Chamber sent to News4JAX:
The national economic picture doesn’t reflect what we’re seeing here in Jacksonville. We’re the second hottest housing market in the country, the fourth fastest growing economy in the country and tops in Florida.
Our economic development team is fielding calls from companies looking to expand to Jacksonville and people are moving here from all over the country – particularly the Northeast and California. We do need to invest so our housing supply can catch up with demand. Building more workforce housing needs to be a top priority as people continue to move here.
(Daniel Davis/President & CEO, Jax Chamber)
We also spoke with the group North Florida Builders about the current state of home construction in the greater Jacksonville area. They said that custom homes are outpacing much of the country and are still strong in sales. They expect that to last for at least another two to three years. However, they did say that national builders who build mass developments with dozens or hundreds of houses at once have seen a slowdown.