Skip to main content

Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: Economic Indicator

Sep 28, 2022 09:37AM ● By David Dykes

Lower Gas Prices, Favorable Views of Labor Market Boost Confidence

The Consumer Confidence Index rose to its highest level since April, and now sits more than 12 points higher than where it was just two months ago, Wells Fargo economists Tim Quinlan and Shannon Seery said in a Sept. 27, 2022, report.

They also said falling gasoline prices and a still-tight labor market are the main reasons for a recent rebound in confidence.

But they said as inflation persists and the Fed lifts rates to combat it, we're unlikely to see confidence approach pre-pandemic levels.

According to the economists:

- The near five-point gain in consumer confidence in September lifted the index to 108.0.

That marks the highest level in five months, and in conjunction with the sizable gain in August, puts the index 12.7 points higher than where it stood just two months ago.

- Both consumers view of their present situation, which rose to 149.6 from 145.3 previously, and expectations of the future improved.

In fact, at 80.3 expectations have not been this high since February, a sharp pivot from recent pessimism about coming economic conditions.

The economists said most measures of labor demand have shown signs of topping out.

New Wire Marine Expanding Operations in Dorchester County

New Wire Marine, a marine electrical system design company, announced plans to expand operations in Dorchester County.

The company’s $1.8 million investment will create 38 jobs over the next five years, according to the South Carolina Department of Commerce.

Founded in 2010, New Wire Marine delivers American-made, professional-grade marine products, offering an assortment of custom-made marine switch panels, electrical distribution panels, gauge and meter panels, and other marine-grade electrical necessities.

The company provides engineered, customizable and affordable products to customers worldwide.

Located at Dorchester Industrial Park in North Charleston, New Wire Marine is adding an 8,000-square-foot warehouse at its site to accommodate company growth and production.

The expansion will more than double the current production floor size, allowing for more computer numerical control (CNC) machinery and increased production capacity.

The expansion is expected to be complete in January 2023. Those interested in joining New Wire Marine should go to the company’s careers page.

The state’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits related to the project.

Armada Analytics Acquires f3 Inc.

Greenville, S.C.-based Armada Analytics, a commercial real estate services provider, said it would be acquiring f3 Inc., an engineering and environmental due diligence firm in St. Louis, Missouri.

Terms weren’t disclosed.

For decades, Armada Analytics has set the industry standard in inspections of multifamily and other commercial properties with its Acquisition and Due Diligence Department. 

Armada Analytics officials said merging with f3 Inc. will give them the ability to go deeper in assessing the physical condition of properties, providing their clients with an ease of engagement for multiple services.

f3 Inc.'s team of engineers specialize in Engineering and Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs) of commercial investment properties. 

"f3's best-in-class Engineering and Environmental reports," said Matt Legge, Armada Analytics CEO, fit “perfectly with the services we currently offer with our zoning and other property inspection reports."

Bridgestone: Aiken Tire Plant is First American Tire Manufacturing Facility to Earn International Sustainability, Carbon Certification

Bridgestone Americas said its Aiken County Passenger/Light Truck Radial tire plant is the first tire manufacturing facility in America to earn the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC) PLUS recognition for its transparency and traceability of sustainable raw materials, including bio, bio-circular and circular-based material to replace synthetic rubber, as the company's continues its drive toward tires made from 100-percent sustainable materials by 2050.

"Step by step, we are working to overcome the technological and market barriers to fully sustainable and renewable tires made with bio-sourced and recycled materials," said Nizar Trigui, chief technology officer and group president, Bridgestone Americas.

"This ISCC PLUS certification for our Aiken County Plant is an important mile marker in our journey to become a leading sustainable solutions company."

In 2021, Bridgestone announced the manufacturing process at the Aiken County facility would be directly powered by its first ground-based solar array.

The facility is powered by approximately eight acres of solar panels that generate enough electricity to power over 200 homes annually, while also reducing 1,400 metric tons of CO2 emissions each year. 

The 2.78 million-square-foot manufacturing facility in Graniteville, S.C., employing over 1,740 Bridgestone teammates, began production of passenger and light truck radial tires in 1997.

Tires produced at the plant equip standard passenger vehicles and light trucks for original equipment and retail.

Allow us to tell your company's Business Narrative. Send your press release to David Dykes or for more information email [email protected]