Tampa Bay Business Journal: September 27, 2013

TAMPA - In this week's Tampa Bay Business Journal segment, editor Alexis Muellner discusses how export numbers point to an improving local economy, where hotel numbers are trending up, and the impact Tampa Bay Fashion Week is having on local businesses.

A report from the Brookings Metropolitan Export Exchange due out this fall should show exports from the Tampa Bay area are up.

According to Export Nation, a project by JPMorgan Chase and Brookings, $13.2 billion of goods and services was export from the area in 2012. That was an increase of 21.1% from 2010.

The key? A balanced approach to exports with trade fairly evenly split between goods and services.

Nearly all parts of the Tampa Bay area are seeing an increase in hotel business in 2013.

The only areas down from last year are around Tampa International Airport and in downtown Tampa. That is not surprising because those areas saw huge demand due to the 2012 Republican National Convention.

A major reason the majority of Bay Area hotels are seeing a higher occupancy rate is a healthier economy. More people are willing to take vacations to Tampa Bay, which in turn means more money flowing into the community.

The sixth annual Tampa Bay Fashion Week recently concluded. The event continues to grow. A record crowd attended the event-ending fashion show at the Hilton Hotel a week ago.

The growth of Fashion Week is helping spur even more interest and jobs in the Bay Area's creative industries such as clothing design, fashion and high couture..

For more information on these stories, click on the video player on the left, go to www.youtube.com/watch?v=HghNs5GhOn8 or pick up this week's Tampa Bay Business Journal available on newsstands.

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