• 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic to Generate $18.5 Million for St. Louis

    Dec 28, 2016
    ST. LOUIS (Dec. 28, 2016) -  The 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® between the hometown St. Louis Blues and the Chicago Blackhawks serves as the centerpiece of the Blues’ season long celebration marking 50 years in the National Hockey League.  And while St. Louisans are eagerly anticipating the historic match between the rival teams on Monday, Jan. 2, their effort to bring the outdoor game to Busch Stadium marks a guaranteed victory for the regional economy.

    The St. Louis Regional Chamber’s Director of Economic Research, Ruth Sergenian, calculates the economic impact of the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® could generate $18.5 million for the region. This estimate is based on the assumption that the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® and the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® Alumni Game on Saturday, Dec. 31, will both draw 45,000 attendees to Busch Stadium in downtown St. Louis. 

    “The St. Louis Blues have answered the call in making the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® a community event well beyond the game at Busch Stadium against the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday afternoon,” said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.  “I’ve seen the economic impact this event has made in other cities since our first Winter Classic in 2008 and it’s impressive.  Plus, the national and global exposure the game generates will speak well on behalf of the energy and enthusiasm of St. Louis and generations of fans who have stood by the Blues for 50 years.  St. Louis earned the opportunity to host this season’s edition and I know the Blues and everyone associated with the game will find the experience worth the effort.”

    Complementing attendance numbers throughout the weekend will be immense fan traffic at Ballpark Village, located across from Busch Stadium, as well as activities at Winterfest at the Arch, including public ice skating sessions, a youth ball hockey tournament and more. Scottrade Center, the traditional home of the Blues, will also be a hub of action this weekend as more than 15,000 revelers are expected to attend a New Year’s Eve concert featuring Kid Rock.

    The total economic impact of the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® includes direct visitor spending and direct operations at Busch Stadium, which is expected to total $9.6 million. The direct expenditures will ripple through the local economy to generate about another $8.9 million in indirect and induced expenditures. Collectively, these sums total $18.5 million positively impacting St. Louis.  The St. Louis Regional Chamber uses an economic model called IMPLAN to develop these estimates.

     “Our goal of bringing the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® to St. Louis was twofold,” said Blues CEO and President of Business Operations Chris Zimmerman.  “One, we wanted to celebrate our 50th anniversary season by hosting the league’s showcase regular-season event, all as a reward to our fans who have been remarkably loyal and supportive for 50 years.  And, two, we wanted to serve our community and build a series of events beyond the game, giving the entire region a lift in what would otherwise be a soft period for the local economy.  It isn’t often you can say you’re staging a once-in-a-lifetime event, but in this case it is true and we’re happy that the benefits will be shared far and wide.”

    About the St. Louis Regional Chamber
    The St. Louis Regional Chamber is a broad community of leaders united for economic prosperity throughout the entire St. Louis bi-state region. Our aspiration is for St. Louis to be one of the Top 10 U.S. regions in prosperity. Our one purpose is to inspire a greater St. Louis. Together, we will make St. Louis a more attractive place for people to live, work, and invest. We will win on today’s regional strengths in focused economic clusters: financial services, health, multimodal logistics, and biosciences. We will champion a better tomorrow through greater educational attainment, inclusion and talent attraction, entrepreneurship and innovation. For more information, visit www.stlregionalchamber.com.
    About Explore St. Louis
    Explore St. Louis is the driving force behind St. Louis’ $5 billion convention and tourism industry, the official destination marketing organization of St. Louis City and County and operator of the America’s Center Convention Complex. For more information, visit www.explorestlouis.com.
  • Local Businesses are Optimistic for the Second Half of 2016

    Jun 30, 2016

    Three surveys released this month indicate business owners’ optimism for the St. Louis economy, which is expected to expand throughout the fall.

    The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis’ Second Quarter 2016 Burgundy Book, released on June 21st, reports that surveyed business executives have an increasingly positive outlook of the economy compared to the previous quarter. More people expect improvements over the next quarter and fewer expect conditions to worsen. The local housing market’s recovery is accelerating.  Residential real estate is heating up due to an increased demand, driving appreciation and sales activities that outpace national trends. In turn, this strong demand is excepted to spur construction activity into the next quarter.

    The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey, released on June 14th, anticipates an uptick in hiring activity over the next three months.  According to the survey, 19 percent of regional employers plan to hire new employees, 74 percent will maintain current staffing levels and 6 percent plan to reduce staff.  These percentages translate into a Net Employment Outlook of 13 percent, consistent with the Net Employment Outlook from one year ago.  The possibility for job growth is broad. In particular, the following sectors are reported to expand: construction, durable goods manufacturing, transportation and utilities, financial activity, professional and business services, education and health services, leisure and hospitality as well as government.

    The technology sector is also slated to see employment rates rise. According to the Robert Half Technology’s IT Hiring Forecast and Local Trend Report, also released on June 21st, a quarter of the St. Louis-area technology executives expect to hire more IT professionals in the second half of 2016.  This rate is up slightly from the 24% reported this time last year.  Fewer companies report putting hiring plans on hold or reducing their IT staff. Joe McIntyre, the St. Louis district president of Robert Half Technology said in a statement that “It’s a great time to be a technology professional in St. Louis…New projects and initiatives, as well as continued economic growth, have spurred hiring at local companies in the healthcare, financial services and retail sectors.” 

    Overall, the St. Louis area economy is forecast to strengthen throughout the next several quarters. For an insight into the region’s current employment activity and labor force performance, refer to the latest issue of Greater St. Louis Monthly Employment Summary on our website.