2015 Regional Report: The Northeast

In the Northeast, the Recession isn’t over yet.

#46 Massachusetts: Job Growth Continues

THE MASSACHUSETTS ECONOMY is in Year 5 of an expansion that began just as the last recession was ending. Job growth in Massachusetts will continue accelerating over the next couple of years before stabilizing in 2018, according to a New England Economic Partnership forecast.

While the commonwealth’s technology-driven growth continues to fuel prosperity, its aging work force causes concern. Increasingly, job growth will be in non-manufacturing jobs, particularly
education, health services, professional and business services, leisure and hospitality.

“Massachusetts feels they have a stranglehold on the pharma industry and they haven’t done much spending to welcome relocators.”

Business groups like the Boston Chamber of Commerce want to expand charter schools, “close the achievement gap,” and strengthen connections between employers and students. They’re also focused on tax-reform proposals, reining in unemployment insurance taxes and reducing health care costs. To bolster global positioning, business leaders call for expanding international connections at Logan Airport and funding improvement to the Port of Boston.

Incentives? Massachusetts “feels they have a stranglehold on the pharmaceutical industry and they haven’t done much” spending to welcome relocators, asserts Dan Breen. The Tax Foundation ranks Massachusetts’ state and local tax burden 11th highest out of 50 states and ranks it 25th in business-tax climate. Massachusetts spends more than $2.26 billion a year on incentives.

#47 New Jersey: Moving on Out?

BY MANY ACCOUNTS, the Garden State’s economy is rocking. So why all the wanderlust? Mercedes made headlines this winter when it accepted a $23 million incentive package from Georgia and bid farewell to Montvale.

“New Jersey has some of the strongest incentives you’ll see in this countr.”

Households have been antsy, too; New Jerseyites led the nation in outmigration in 2014, the fourth time in the last five years that they’ve captured this dubious honor. Behind the exodus are such factors are high costs of doing business: taxes, fees, real estate costs and payroll. Professional services are scaling down. Still, 2015 will be “a positive year,” according to the New Jersey Business & Industry Association. In a survey last fall, 40 percent of companies the NJBIA surveyed said their profits rose in 2014, with 45 percent anticipating higher sales in 2015. Plus, 44 percent of companies spent more in 2014 than in the previous year, a rate they expect to continue this year. Furthermore, 22 percent expect to hire this year, twice the rate of future downsizers.

Executives surveyed listed health care benefits and taxes as major concerns, while fretting that government will reach into their pockets to make up budget shortfalls. New Jersey’s economic
development programs generally earn glowing reviews. The state “has some of the strongest incentives you’ll see in this country,” says Joe Lacy, managing director of Biggins Lacy Shapiro
& Company, based in New York, Princeton and Chicago.

Jones Lang LaSalle’s Breen says, “Grow New Jersey has been very well received by the business community.” Others blame application complexity for scaring off aspirants. Infrastructure
improvements and more competitive labor costs will please business owners and chiefs, but don’t expect them short term.

The Tax Foundation ranked New Jersey’s state and local tax burden 2nd highest out of 50 states and ranks it 49th in business tax climate. New Jersey spends more than $675 million per year on incentive programs.


  • Get the CEO Briefing

    Sign up today to get weekly access to the latest issues affecting CEOs in every industry
  • upcoming events


    Strategic Planning Workshop

    1:00 - 5:00 pm

    Over 70% of Executives Surveyed Agree: Many Strategic Planning Efforts Lack Systematic Approach Tips for Enhancing Your Strategic Planning Process

    Executives expressed frustration with their current strategic planning process. Issues include:

    1. Lack of systematic approach (70%)
    2. Laundry lists without prioritization (68%)
    3. Decisions based on personalities rather than facts and information (65%)


    Steve Rutan and Denise Harrison have put together an afternoon workshop that will provide the tools you need to address these concerns.  They have worked with hundreds of executives to develop a systematic approach that will enable your team to make better decisions during strategic planning.  Steve and Denise will walk you through exercises for prioritizing your lists and steps that will reset and reinvigorate your process.  This will be a hands-on workshop that will enable you to think about your business as you use the tools that are being presented.  If you are ready for a Strategic Planning tune-up, select this workshop in your registration form.  The additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    New York, NY: ​​​Chief Executive's Corporate Citizenship Awards 2017

    Women in Leadership Seminar and Peer Discussion

    2:00 - 5:00 pm

    Female leaders face the same issues all leaders do, but they often face additional challenges too. In this peer session, we will facilitate a discussion of best practices and how to overcome common barriers to help women leaders be more effective within and outside their organizations. 

    Limited space available.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $495 will be added to your total.

    Golf Outing

    10:30 - 5:00 pm
    General’s Retreat at Hermitage Golf Course
    Sponsored by UBS

    General’s Retreat, built in 1986 with architect Gary Roger Baird, has been voted the “Best Golf Course in Nashville” and is a “must play” when visiting the Nashville, Tennessee area. With the beautiful setting along the Cumberland River, golfers of all capabilities will thoroughly enjoy the golf, scenery and hospitality.

    The golf outing fee includes transportation to and from the hotel, greens/cart fees, use of practice facilities, and boxed lunch. The bus will leave the hotel at 10:30 am for a noon shotgun start and return to the hotel after the cocktail reception following the completion of the round.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $295 will be added to your total.