May 24, 2021

Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Old Dominion University’s Strome College of Business, will host the 2021 Economic Forecast Mid-Year Breakfast on June 17th, 2021, at the Newport News Marriott at City Center

After a fifteen-month hiatus precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce will host its first live event in partnership with ODU’s Strome College of Business.  Economists from ODU’s Dragas Center for Economic Analysis and Policy will deliver their midyear forecast for an unprecedented year on June 17, 2021, from 7:30 am to 9:30 am at the Newport News Marriott at City Center.  Individual tickets and sponsorship packages can be purchased online at

Dr. Robert McNab will deliver the national and Virginia midyear forecast update. For the first time since March 2020, COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths are declining in all 50 states. With 3 in 4 Americans over the age of 65 fully vaccinated and 6 in 10 adults with at least one vaccination, the economic recovery from the pandemic has arrived. However, the economy has changed. Millions remain outside the workforce and supply chains remained constrained from the shocks of the last year. As prices rises and workers demand higher wages, can economic growth be sustained in the face of increasing inflation? Will interest rates rise or will price increases moderate later in the year? We will examine these and other questions in the national and Virginia economic forecasts.

Dr. Vinod Agarwal, chair of ODU’s Economic Forecasting Project, will deliver the regional forecast. At the regional level, latest data indicate a stagnant job market. The hotel industry was devastated by the pandemic, especially in the Williamsburg market. The pace of recovery in this industry will be discussed. The residential housing market appears to have escaped the brutal impacts of COVID-19. We will also examine the impact of the pandemic on movement of cargo at the port of Virginia. What might the future look like for the Hampton Roads economy post COVID-19?

ODU’s Dragas Center for Economic Analysis and Policy has for more than 20 years been an independent explainer and forecaster of economic data here, in the Commonwealth and nationally.


The Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce (VPCC) serves the Cities of Newport News, Hampton and Poquoson; and James City County and York County.

VPCC is a business association, which “Connects Business with Opportunity” through Facilitation, Advocacy, Communication and Education.

The VPCC takes a leadership and advocacy position on pro-Peninsula and pro-business public policy impacting the Virginia Peninsula business community. The VPCC hosts a series of educational, and leadership programs, including the annual State of the City Series; the Peninsula Executive Leadership Forum; Military Job Fair; Pink Bag Lunches; and Business Connections, in addition to numerous business roundtables.

The VPCC is located at 21 Enterprise Parkway, Suite 100 in Hampton. For more information, call 757.262.2000 or email

Connect to the Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce online at