UWF Haas Business Center

What you pay for food, housing, utilities and other expenses depends in part on your address. That’s the subject of a new cost of living study from the Haas Business Center at the University of West Florida.

When it comes to cities in Florida, the Pensacola metropolitan area – Pensacola/Ferry Pass/Brent – was in the middle of the pack in inexpensiveness, according to the Haas Center’s Amy Newburn, who oversaw the study.

Santa Rosa County is forging a partnership with the University of West Florida’s Haas Business Center to provide expanded economic analyses to county officials.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the project is for one year. Then it will be revisited to see if it needs tweaking.

Sandra Averhart / WUWF Public Media

For Black History Month, the Haas Center at the University of West Florida is collaborating with the Gulf Coast Minority Chamber of Commerce to present “We the People,” a demographic overview of African Americans in the Pensacola metro area. The goal of the report is to get a sense of their economic impact locally.

CBS News

Along with their fellow Americans, Floridians and Pensacola-area residents are feeling the effects of the partial shutdown of the federal government. The Haas Business Center at UWF is studying those effects.

At this point, Haas has modeled up to 25 days of the shutdown, showing more than 7,100 jobs in Florida now idled.


Hurricane Michael is long gone, but the damage it inflicted remains – including the economic damage. WUWF’s Dave Dunwoody looks at an ongoing study by the Haas Business Center.

Michael made landfall near Mexico Beach on October 10 as a strong Category-4 storm, with 155 mph winds and gusts up to 175 mph. It’s likely to become the 12th weather disaster in the United States this year to run up a $1 billion tab according to The Weather Channel.

Haas Center

The Haas Center at the University of West Florida is out with its first-ever political poll, focusing on the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races.

The survey was conducted from July 30-August 13, involving 610 respondents in 18 Panhandle counties.

“We wanted to focus on something that had a statewide presence, but we also focus regionally. So our poll only goes through the Panhandle, a little bit past Tallahassee,” said Haas Assistant Director Amy Newburn.

Downtown Improvement Board

Do you have issues when it comes to parking in downtown Pensacola? You’re not alone, according to a new study from the University of West Florida’s Haas Business Center. 

Researchers gathered the data between May 18-June 8. The margin of error is four percentage points and  the survey was a “multi-modal” survey – that is, using a number of methods -- with some help from the Downtown Improvement Board.

Sandra Averhart / WUWF Public Media

The 2018 Point-in-Time (PIT) survey of homeless people living in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties was conducted Wednesday, January 24.

Data from the count is important. Beyond that data, local officials have commissioned the University of West Florida to conduct a study on the cost of homelessness, which they plan to use to help determine their next steps in addressing the problem.

The last PIT survey in 2017 showed 758 homeless people living in the two-county area. Of those, 539 were men, 117 were veterans, and 135 were chronically homeless.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

Almost eight in ten Pensacola residents say the city’s on the right track, according to the fourth annual Community Survey from the Haas Business Center.

That 76 percent mark is ten points higher than last year’s survey. The project, says Amy Newburn at the Center, was a mixed-method survey, that is, primarily on the telephone but also with “intercept surveys,” Haas-speak for in-person interviews.

UWF Haas Business Center

Respondents to a survey to assess resident satisfaction with the City of Pensacola’s delivery of services and life in general were about as happy with things this year as they were in 2015.

The findings include 69.3 percent of those surveyed during a five-week period in October and November believe the City is heading in the right direction, and a 14 percentage point jump in those who say they’re “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the value of city services.

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the Panama Papers scandal and tax inversion,the rise in service sector jobs and why economic growth isn’t benefiting everyone in our area.

The Panama Papers scandal, in which a leak revealed that many world leaders are storing their wealth in secret offshore accounts to avoid taxes, was big news this week, but what does it mean for the world economy? In Harper’s view, not much in the short term.

University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the projection for growth for local economies over the next few months and the rise in Pensacola airfares.

The University of West Florida Haas Center is out with a report, projecting that Northwest Florida economies are expected to experience uneven growth through May.

“I think uneven is a good way to put it,” said Harper, noting the Haas Center’s new quarterly Indexes of Coincident and Leading Economic Indicators.

  A report released Monday from the Haas Center at the University of West Florida contradicts an earlier report on payday loans in Florida. The Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy at Florida International University in Miami released a report in late summer that said the Pensacola region was responsible for close to 40 percent of the state’s payday loan transactions in 2012, far more than any other metropolitan area in Florida.

  There’s a new partnership in town between the University of West Florida and the Studer Institute: with UWF economist Rick Harper becoming the Institute’s Director.

The genesis of both the partnership and Harper’s new job took place a number of months ago, and is partially related to his longtime friendship with former Pensacola News Journal publisher Randy Hammer, who’s now the Studer Institute’s President and CEO.

New numbers from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity show that the state's unemployment rate edged up slightly in May to 6.3%. That translates to about 606,000 jobless Floridians.

The bump in the rate, from April’s 6.2% mark, was not totally unexpected. Economists had projected it to grow slightly, as more people began seeking work as the economic recovery continues. DEO Executive Director Jesse Panuccio says concentrate on the big picture.