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Wednesday, Feb 28, 2024

Economic Trends | RECAP


The Los Angeles Business Journal was excited to host the 2023 Economic Trends virtual discussion event on Wednesday afternoon, February 1st.

The event featured two lively virtual panel discussions featuring leading experts on the hottest topics on the minds of LA area business leaders at the start of this year. The panels offered an insightful look back on the unprecedented challenges and silver linings of the past couple of years while providing a deep dive into the economic trends we are facing moving forward into 2023.

Our outstanding group of panelists and moderators examined the issues as they shared their experiences and predictions for the year to come. The panels this year focused on the hot-button topics of “The Real Estate Question: What’s Actually Happening?” and “Trends to Expect in 2023,” with expert insights and analysis about the impact current trends are likely to have on the overall economic climate.

The Real Estate panel, moderated by Jim Kruse, the regional president, greater LA, for Kidder Matthews, featured a spirited discussion containing shared knowledge from Erica Finck of Cushman & Wakefield; Sean Fulp of Colliers; Martin Griffiths of KPMG; and Kofi Nartey of Globl Red.

Each of the experts weighed in on a variety of hot real estate issues and talking points, including:
•  Office utilization and how safety and cleanliness impacts interest in coming to
the office;
•  The role of public transportation in Los Angeles;
•  An analysis of the tax property basis for DTLA, the amount of TIER 1 and 2 buildings, and what happens to that tax base when the values reset to something much lower;
•  An analysis of sales and hotel taxes which would be tied to retail sales and hotel occupancy;
•  The likelihood of workouts or foreclosures over the next 12 months;
•  What can be done to attract tenants and/or reduce vacancy rates;
•  Forthcoming opportunities in the market;
•  How buyers and sellers navigate through an uncertain economic environment;
•  How developers, large and small, navigate through today’s market; and
•  The various impacts of Measure ULA.

Immediately following the eye-opening real estate conversation, the Los Angeles Business Journal audience was treated to an equally in-depth and timely group roundtable on what trends we can expect to see in the coming 12 months.

The Outlook panel, moderated by Elsa R. Burton, the Los Angeles regional manager of Fifth Third Bank, featured expert insights from Kevin Conner of Conner Advisory Group LLC; Larry Holt of the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation; and Brian Oard of Wilmington Trust.

Each of these professionals weighed in on a number of discussion topics, including:
•  Whether the Fed will continue to increase rates and what affect it will have on inflation;
•  The status of the consumer products market, including specialty retail – and the near-term outlook for commercial retail including a further push into on-line e-commerce;
•  The federal tax landscape outlook for 2023 as we approach a presidential election in 2024;
•  The continued impact the pandemic will have on the relationship between employees and their employers;
•  How LA County ranks nationally for job growth;
•  The pros and cons to doing business in LA County;
•  Successful models of progressive economic development;
•  The impact of labor regulations and cost of labor;
•  How increased regulation, litigation from trial lawyers, cost of living, crime and traffic has impacted the ability for small businesses to compete in our state;
• …and much more!

Many thanks to our excellent panelists, who took the time to share their insights on the biggest headlines and where the market is going in 2023.

A recap video of the discussion is available here.




Erica Finck
Capital Markets
Cushman & Wakefield



Sean Fulp
Vice Chair & Head of Office Capital Markets, U.S. Southwest



Martin Griffiths


Jim Kruse
Regional President, Greater LA
Kidder Mathews



Kofi Nartey
Chief Executive Officer
Globl Red




Elsa Burton
Los Angeles Regional Manager
Fifth Third Bank



Kevin Conner
Managing Director
Conner Advisory Group LLC



Larry Holt
Vice President – Economic & Workforce Development
Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation



Brian Oard
President, Western Region
Wilmington Trust




Office Utilization: An Issue the City Cannot Afford to Ignore
There are many concerns surrounding the office market: office utilization, lender and investor appetite, construction and operating costs, functional obsolescence, and the list continues… Read More

Study Details Commercial Real Estate’s Impact on the Overall US Economy
The impact of new commercial real estate development in the US continues to grow, according to the annual “Economic Impacts of Commercial Real Estate” research study conducted by the NAIOP Research Foundation… Read More

A Global View: Slowdown to Hit Some Nations Hard
Global growth is slowing sharply in the face of elevated inflation, higher interest rates, reduced investment, and disruptions caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, according to the World Bank’s latest Global Economic Prospects report… Read More





If you’re interested in sponsoring, speaking or partnership opportunities please call (323) 549-5225 or email

Return to main 2023 events page click here


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