UHERO Forecasts provide the Hawaii community with analysis of economic trends in the State and the Asia-Pacific region.

UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaiʻi: Expansion intact, but counties poised for slower growth May 10, 2024 Hawaii’s economy will continue to grow, but at a slower pace than in past years. Maui rebuilding and the incremental return of international travelers will support tourism, helping to offset a moderate pullback in the US mainland market. Construction will continue to be a source of strength, even as overall job and income growth decelerate.… Read More
UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaiʻi: Near-term slowing expected as pandemic recovery ends February 23, 2024 Hawaii’s economy has been sustained by a resilient US and the gradual return of international visitors. With the Islands’ post-pandemic recovery now largely complete, the economy will downshift this year, and support for growth will increasingly come from local sources, including a robust construction sector that will be bolstered by Maui rebuilding. On the Valley… Read More
UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaiʻi: State facing headwinds as Maui recovery begins December 15, 2023 Hawaii’s economy has been resilient in the face of weakening US and global economies, high interest rates, and the glacial return of Japanese travelers. Deceleration in key visitor markets will produce slower growth in 2024. But, absent a US recession, moderate gains will resume in 2025. While economic fallout from the Maui wildfires has been… Read More
UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaiʻi: Wildfires deliver heavy blow to Maui economy September 22, 2023 The tragic Maui wildfires have inflicted deep pain and loss on the affected communities, and sorrow among all of Hawaii’s residents. There are also economic costs for the county and the state as a whole, many of which will last well into the future. In our first forecast since the fires, we assess the implications… Read More
UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaiʻi: Promise and Peril for the Hawaii Economy May 12, 2023 Recent developments bring both promise and peril for Hawaii. Tourism prospects are positive, despite the delayed Japanese market recovery. Construction activity will remain high, and inflation is receding rapidly, setting the stage for real income gains. On the flip side, the Fed’s aggressive rate hikes and liquidity problems sparked by recent bank failures threaten the… Read More
UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaiʻi: Hawaiʻi’s Soft Landing Still in the Cards March 10, 2023 Our Hawaiʻi outlook continues to see economic slowing but no recession. While international tourism will continue to recover, domestic travel will soften as the US economy contracts later this year. Combined with high interest rates and prices, this will cause local growth to weaken through the first half of 2024. The cooling of inflation in… Read More
Downtown Honolulu by little plant on Unsplash UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: Global war on inflation will hinder Hawaii growth December 16, 2022 The global outlook continues to darken, but prospects for Hawaii remain largely unchanged from our last report. Rising interest rates, dwindling pandemic era savings, and the coming US downturn will cause a pause in growth next year. But the belated recovery of the Japanese visitor market and surging public sector construction will prevent a recession… Read More
Aerial of Waikiki UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: US recession will weigh on Hawaii’s recovery September 23, 2022 The economic horizon has darkened since our last forecast. The global economy has slowed sharply, and the US is headed for a mild recession in the first half of next year. Hawaii may well escape overall net job losses, thanks to the recovery of Japanese travel that is now finally underway. But high inflation, higher… Read More
Waikiki Beach (photo by little plant from Unsplash) UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: Foreign visitors will provide lift, but risks have multiplied May 12, 2022 Hawaii’s recovery has resumed now that the Delta and Omicron waves are behind us. Once the Asian COVID-19 wave recedes, the long-awaited return of international visitors will begin later this spring. Hawaii’s delayed recovery from the pandemic means that we expect moderately strong growth, despite clearly deteriorating conditions in the US and global economies. The… Read More
Waikiki by AussieActive on Unsplash UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: With Omicron in the rearview mirror, a clearer road ahead? March 5, 2022 The two COVID-19 waves since last summer caused a pullback in Hawaii tourism and a pause in labor market recovery. Visitor arrivals are now picking up and broader growth is resuming. The expected transition of the virus to an endemic disease will enable the return of international visitors. Considerable risks remain, including COVID-19 surprises, Fed… Read More
Waikiki Beach UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: Recovery resumes, but Omicron looms December 17, 2021 Economic recovery resumed with the end of Hawaii’s COVID-19 wave. Now Omicron is a new threat. Renewed international travel restrictions have reduced the near-term visitor outlook, but the eventual return of foreign tourists in 2022 will enable a broader industry upturn. Moderate job gains will continue, although labor shortages, the end of pandemic support, and… Read More
UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: Delta wave swamps tourism, but return to recovery expected September 24, 2021 Hawaii's recovery has experienced a setback with the recent surge in COVID-19. Record virus numbers and preventive policy responses have caused an abrupt tourism pullback and are signalling a near-term decline in overall economic activity. While the Delta wave may now have turned the corner, we are in for a period of weakness before growth… Read More
Ko'Olina Beach UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: Vaccinations and US Strength Drive Upgraded Hawaii Forecast May 14, 2021 Economic conditions in Hawaii are improving. The dominant US visitor market has outperformed expectations, and built-up savings and pent-up demand will drive mainland arrivals to near-normal levels in coming months. International markets will be much slower to recover. Local employment gains have been limited so far, but the vaccine rollout in Hawaii and nationally sets… Read More
Waikiki UHERO Forecast for the State of Hawaii: More Substantial Recovery in Sight March 5, 2021 Hawaii is struggling to emerge from the COVID-19 downturn, but the recovery is poised to accelerate. Falling virus counts and vaccination progress set the stage for a strengthening of tourism and the broader economy. The pandemic has damaged businesses and lower-income households, and full recovery remains several years down the road. Public Summary Read More
Waikiki Beach (photo by little plant from Unsplash) Annual Hawaii Forecast With Global Outlook: Mainland COVID-19 surge means a bleak winter, but vaccines promise 2021 growth December 11, 2020 The Hawaii economy began to recover from the COVID-19 downturn by the end of the second quarter, but subsequent global waves of the pandemic have disrupted economic progress. The ongoing mainland virus surge and the State’s tightened quarantine rules will weigh on near-term recovery, while news of coming vaccines fundamentally improves growth prospects for the… Read More