Economist John Mitchell said the expansion's annual rate in 2016 will be close to two percent when he spoke at the Portland Business Alliance Forum Breakfast.
Mitchell, the former chief economist for U.S. Bancorp, and now a principal in M & H Economic Consultants sees a broad-based improvement in the employment picture, with the northwest outpacing the rest of the country in job growth.
'One of the puzzling things is that you have not seen more of an increase in wages,' he says, 'we’ve been looking for that.' He predicts that the tightening labor market will create upward pressure on wages and that hiring will get more difficult.
(READ MORE: Portland Tribune)