Economists deliver midyear updates

Montana economy 2017

UM researchers discuss Montana economy

Patrick Barkey, director of the University of Montana’s Bureau for Business and Economic Research, and Paul Polzin, the bureau’s emeritus director, will travel to seven Montana cities in July to provide midyear economic updates.

As part of the 12th Annual Economic Update Series, presented by the Montana Chamber Foundation, Barkey and Polzin will present “Infrastructure Builds Montana,” a midyear economic update on the state and local economies.
            Polzin will deliver “Whether or not there was a ‘Trump Bump’” and “Why the oil bust in eastern Montana matters in western Montana.” Polzin also will address “Why are world markets important to Montana?”
Darryl James, executive director of the Montana Infrastructure Coalition, will join Barkey and Polzin for the seven-city tour as one of the keynote speakers. James will address the critical status of Montana’s infrastructure and the impact it has on the state and local economies.

According to a 2015 report issued by the American Society of Civil Engineers, Montana’s infrastructure is approaching a critical state of disrepair. This series will focus on the economic impact of infrastructure on Montana’s economy.
The midyear update schedule is:

  • 7 a.m., Tuesday, July 25, Northern Hotel, Billings.

  • Noon, Tuesday, July 25, Holiday Inn, Bozeman.

  • 4 p.m., Tuesday, July 25, NorthWestern Energy, Butte.

  • 8 a.m., Wednesday, July 26, Radisson Colonial Hotel, Helena.

  • Noon, Wednesday, July 26, Hilton Garden Inn, Great Falls.

  • 7 a.m., Thursday, July 27, Hilton Garden Inn, Missoula.

  • Noon, Thursday, July 27, Hilton Garden Inn, Kalispell.

The cost of attending is $30 for members of the Montana Chamber of Commerce and $35 for nonmembers. Updates are approximately 90 minutes and include either lunch or breakfast. The Butte event will feature a social gathering after the event. Register online at

Established in 1948, BBER is the main research unit of UM’s School of Business Administration. It informs Montanans about the economic climate in which they live and work. In addition to conducting its Economic Outlook Seminars across the state each year, BBER researchers engage in a wide range of applied research projects that address different aspects of the state economy, including survey research, economic analysis, health care research, forecasting, wood products research and energy research. For more information about BBER, visit or call 406-243-5113.


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