February 06, 2004

Los Angeles — The UCLA Anderson Forecast, one of the nation's most accurate and widely followed economic forecasts, announces changes to their economist team. Joseph Hurd and Michael Bazdarich will join the UCLA Anderson Forecast as senior economists in an effort to expand forecasting of the national economy and key California regions. In a related move, Dr. Tom Lieser, known for his accurate California economic forecasts, has retired from his position as senior economist after serving more than 10 years with the UCLA Anderson Forecast.

"We're pleased to welcome Dr. Bazdarich and Dr. Hurd to our forecasting team. Many business decisions are local and do not depend much on what is happening in the US overall, or even in California. With the assistance of Dr. Bazdarich and Dr. Hurd we will expand our offerings to include forecasts and insights for some key California regions, in addition to our Los Angeles products developed by Dr. Christopher Thornberg," said Edward Leamer, director, UCLA Anderson Forecast and professor of global economics and management at UCLA Anderson School of Management.

"We would also like to thank Tom for his years of excellent work with the Forecast. His research and analyses of California's economic climate through the years have made a significant impact and we will greatly miss him. We wish him the best with his retirement," said Dr. Leamer.

Dr. Hurd will assume responsibility for the California forecast, overseeing key regions within California's economy. He will also specialize in the Bay Area economy. Dr. Hurd formerly served as director of economics for SBC Communications, where, among his responsibilities, he forecasted the demand for SBC products in California. His background includes more than 20 years of forecasting the California economy, while serving in an advisory role to the UCLA Anderson Forecast. He also taught economics and statistics at UC Davis in the late 1970s, after he received a Ph.D. in economics at UC Berkeley. Dr. Hurd will work from the Bay Area, where he currently resides.

Previously serving for 10 years as Director of the Inland Empire Economic Data and Forecasting Center at UC Riverside, Dr. Bazdarich will bring his expertise to the UCLA Anderson Forecast. His background lies in forecasting the national and Southern California economies, and he will continue to cover the inland Empire. Dr. Bazdarich will also work closely with Dr. Leamer in forecasting the economy of the nation. He owns his own company, MB Economics, which provides economics consulting on U.S. financial markets with a specialization in interest rate forecasting. His other experience includes work with the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, United California Bank, and Claremont Economics Institute. Dr. Bazdarich received a BA from Santa Clara in 1971 and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago in 1978.

Senior Economist Christopher Thornberg will continue to project Los Angeles and other local economic forecasts.

UCLA Anderson Forecast Team Contact Information
Dr. Edward E. Leamer, Director (National economy)
Phone: (310) 206-1452
Dr. Michael Bazdarich, Senior Economist (National and So. California economies)
Phone: (818) 266-6631
Dr. Joseph Hurd, Senior Economist (California and bay area economies)
Phone: (925) 939-4926
Dr. Christopher Thornberg, Senior Economist (Los Angeles and Southern California economies)
Phone: (310) 794-6382
If you would like to contact the above economists, please feel free to call them directly. If you should need assistance in reaching them, please contact Hilary Rehder, media relations specialist, UCLA Anderson School of Management at (310) 206-7707.

For more than fifty years, the UCLA Anderson Forecast has provided forecasts for the economies of California and the United States. Founded in the early 1952, the UCLA Anderson Forecast has become one of the country's leading independent economic forecast services. The Forecast produces forecasts for the economies of the nation, the state of California, and the Southern California region, based upon numerical projections for major economic indicators, such as inflation, interest rates, job growth and gross domestic product growth. The Forecast holds four quarterly conferences annually - each addressing a topical theme.

About UCLA Anderson Forecast
The UCLA Anderson Forecast is one of the most widely watched and often-cited economic outlooks for California and the nation, and was unique in predicting both the seriousness of the early-1990s downturn in California, and the strength of the state's rebound since 1993. Most recently, the Forecast is credited as the first major U.S. economic forecasting group to declare the recession of 2001. Visit the UCLA Anderson Forecast on the Web at http://uclaforecast.com.

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