The Crystal Ball program revealed many amazing predictions.

Per Rick Barkett, CEO of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors, In Broward County, after several years of very tight inventory, more homeowners are opting to sell, and the inventory of single-family homes for sale jumped 18.3 percent from a year earlier. The median price of a single-family home in Broward rose 16 percent to $260,000 in January and the median condo price jumped 23.8 percent to $117,500 year over year. Prediction: The rise in home prices will continue to lift many residences out of negative equity, enabling more owners to put their properties up for sale without the specter of having to shell out cash to satisfy mortgage obligations. The strong market also encourages prospective sellers to seize the moment. All of this at the same time as the Baby Boomers flock to Florida and young singles are moving from West Broward to urban areas to pursue a lifestyle of entertainment, dining, and recreation all within walking distance of their domiciles. Oh and then there are the international customers clamoring for South Florida real estate. All in all, the prediction is that right now, the market is stabilizing and attractive and should remain so in the near future.

Calvin Glidewell, CEO Broward Health Medical Center remarked that Florida Medicaid expansion, with federal contributions estimated at $51 billion over 10 years is a key part of the Affordable Care Act. As originally written, expansion would cover families who have incomes too low to qualify for subsidized enrollment on the federal Health Insurance Marketplace at Healthcare.gov. Expanding Medicaid would provide coverage for about 1 million of Florida’s 4 million uninsured. Yet, in Tallahassee, House Speaker Will Weatherford has given a variety of reasons for not taking federal Medicaid funds, including distrust for the government’s ability to continue paying for its portion of Medicaid. The prediction is: Weatherford will not change his mind. Also it is predicted that Tallahassee will instead focus in 2014 on doctor’s pocketbooks and put its muscle into the “scope of practice” issue as nurse practitioners and others seek more independence from physicians’ supervision.

Sid Spero, Chairman and CEO Regent Bank stated that Community bank officials are struggling to keep up with mounds of government regulations that went into effect last year and will continue to affect business through 2014 and beyond. Although community banks contributed little to the financial crisis, they were swept up in the rush to regulate the financial system and have been drowning in a sea of Dodd-Frank-imposed costly regulation and more than 400 new rules and mandates of which only 50% to date have been put into effect. With hundreds of regulations yet to be enacted, community bankers know the full implementation of Dodd-Frank may be too enormous a burden for them to bear. Resources that would otherwise be directly applied to serving clients and the community are now being spent hiring the staff, lawyers and consultants necessary to comply with the flood of new regulations. Regent Bank had to add four compliance positions last year just to keep up with these new rules. Predictions:–The Court system is broken and will be for a while as evidenced by Florida being the #1 State for foreclosures and it takes a bank 3-5 years to reclaim a property. Prediction- Fraud is and will continue to be placed on the shoulders of banks not retailers.

For Marketing George Mihaiu, President of Fort Lauderdale Media Associates, Inc. predicted that the Wearable Electronics Market will grow. The global market for wearable technology generated $2.7-billion revenue in 2012 and is expected to reach $8.3 billion by 2018. He commented that children today have never lived without mobile devices and so they are not intimidated by marketing customized for the consumer via the digital tracking of the products, people, places and attitudes we display when we google and amazon our way through the day. Marketers view this as customer centricity while many of us feel it is very ‘big-brother’. So marketing and advertising folks, find out- based on your purchasing profile that you love wine or you love dining out or you love golf, then they work to engage you in the things you’ve already made clear are important to you as a person. The future of marketing is a dialogue, which isn’t just advertisers sending out an e-mail and consumers sending something back. The dialogue has to do trying to understand what interests the consumer and then serving them better.

Mason Jackson CEO of Career Source Broward provided a PowerPoint.
He told us boomers are leaving the workforce, but not fast enough. Mason emphasized 2 unemployed people are chasing every job available and who knows how many employed people are chasing that same job. 65% of the employed workforce today is looking for a new job. Soft skills are what employers are seeking: leadership, written and verbal communication, problem solving, motivation, interpersonal skills and creativity. They aren't usually skills we learn in school (although some business schools now have programs to try to help their students improve in these areas- education, Mason said, as an industry Education is undergoing the most radical changes). Technology is replacing people. Jobs don’t attract talent. Talent decides where they want to locate and then find a job. The answer to what are employers looking for? Mason said better than 90 percent of employers believe attitude is the #1 key, because candidates need to be "motivated to learn new skills, think innovatively, cope with failure, assimilate feedback and ... collaborate with teammates.  


Marketing and Advertising: George Mihaiu
President and Publisher Fort Lauderdale Media Associates, Inc.

Financial Services: Cyril S. Spiro
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Regent Bank

Housing/Real Estate: Richard W. Barkett
CEO, Greater Fort Lauderdale REALTORS

Employment: Mason Jackson
President/CEO of WorkForce One Employment Solutions

Medicaid- Calvin E. Glidewell, Jr.
CEO Broward Health Medical Center & Chris Evert Children's Hospital

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

7:30 am: Coffee & Networking
7:45-8:45 am: Presentation/Discussion

FAU/BCC Higher Education Complex, 111 E. Las Olas, Room 1101 

Parking available in the City Garage

RSVP to ftlauderdaleforum@gmail.com

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