4th Quarter 2014

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Foreign continued

by Steven G. Livingston | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Japan and Canada were the biggest sources of investing companies. No surprise there. Each accounted for four new investments. Germany, home of three investing companies, was the only other nation that was the source of more than one investment. We might note the $100 million Chinese Microport Orthopedics investment in Arlington. The global increase in outbound Chinese investment is certainly one of the bigger stories in the global economy, and we should expect to be seeing more such investments in Tennessee.

The annual dollar amount of announced investment can be volatile because of the impact of one or two very large investments in a given year. That happened in this state in 2009 when two billion-dollar-plus polycrystalline silicon investments occurred in the same year. But if we take into account these exceptional investments, the clear upward trend in foreign investment in Tennessee that we have seen in recent years continued in 2014. The dollar value of investment was up about $300 million over last year. The trend in employment growth also continued. Last year's new employment was more than a third higher than 2013 and three times that of 2010 or 2011. The rate of increase in employment stemming from foreign investment again exceeded the state's overall employment growth rate.

By just about anyone's accounting, Tennessee was very successful in attracting foreign investment last year. Once again, the bar for 2015 has been set pretty high.

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