What will Houston’s economy look like in 2016

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HOUSTON, Texas - Up or down?  If only we had a crystal ball to see what Houston's economy has in store for us in 2016.

"I'm actually cautiously optimistic", expressed analyst Marc Passy, from Mispar Consulting.  That's good to know.  Because folks here have some important decisions to make, such as buying a house or renting an apartment, and are a little bit anxious.

According to most financial institutions, the U.S. economy will continue to grow, while most of the rest of the world will see some stagnation.  But with oil and gas prices so low, Houston might be headed for trouble.

"You will see, I think, another wave of bankruptcies, mergers and acquisitions within the oil and gas industry", Passy said, "and that'll certainly affect employment.  But the fact of the matter is the underlying fundamentals of the business, though weak, are not terrible."

And the real estate market might expect to feel some pain too.

"Sure prices will rise less than they have been before", he added.  "You've got to have an effect when there is increasing unemployment.  But I don't think it's gonna be substantial."

We went to Midtown to talk to apartment complex administrators.  They told us 2016 will be smiling at those people looking for rentals.  There's gonna be more availability, they say, and landlords will have to compete on prices and amenities to bring in or retain tenants.

"Competition is always good", expressed Houston resident and wanna-be renter Jack Freeman.  "It always breeds better things."

But you know what they say: location, location, location.  It looks like areas such as the Medical Center are booming -just as much as the healthcare field-, while others such as the Galleria are over-saturated.  So, who knows?  Perhaps you can find a steal.

In conclusion, the new year is taking off.  Let's go for it.

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