Anemic growth in the U.S. economy the past few months may pick up soon -- based on stronger retail sales, optimism among home builders and the Trump administration’s promises of tax cuts and deregulation.

Closer to home, Texas didn't get hit as hard during the recession ... but we may not see the boom that others might.

In the Houston area, the outlook for job creation remains flat – and expectations for growth and job creation is steady, but slow.

Economist Bill Gilmer of the Bauer College of Business’ Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston predicts the creation of 30,000 to 40,000 new jobs in houston this year.

That’s a thin margin of growth – but it would be double the 18,000 jobs that were added last year.

Gilmer says Houston has been one of the fastest-growing economies in the U.S. years ... but oil may lower the ceiling for now.

He says local economic fortunes remain closely tied to oil.

Gilmer says the area's best economic news lately is the housing market, which has rollercoastered for several years “but is now straightening out.”