Hewings, Smoke to present at Business Issues and License Law Forum

University of Illinois Economist Geoff Hewings

Geoffrey Hewings

One economist well-known for his analysis of Illinois housing and another with a flair for making complex issues more understandable will highlight the Business Issues and License Law Forum next Wednesday at the Illinois REALTORS®’ Public Policy Meetings in East Peoria.

Hewings and state real estate trends

For years, Dr. Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director emeritus of Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL), has provided Illinois REALTORS® with monthly, quarterly and annual housing reports and forecasts. At the University of Illinois, Hewings and REAL developed a housing forecasting model based on Multiple Listing Service sales reported by participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations. The research links economic indicators with real estate trends and indicators for the state of Illinois as a whole and the Chicago PMSA.

Hewings is responsible for the overall direction of the University of Illinois’ REAL, coordinates with funding agencies and clients, and supervises graduate students who work for REAL on the Urbana campus of the University of Illinois.

Hewings is professor emeritus of Geography, of Economics and of Urban and Regional Planning for the University of Illinois Department of Economics. He earned his B.A. from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom and his M.A. and Ph. D. from the University of Washington in Seattle.

His major research interests are urban and regional economic analysis with a focus on the design and application of regional economic models. For this he travels all over the world, including several modeling projects in Brazil, Colombia, Japan, Korea and Indonesia.

His presentation will focus on Illinois real estate.

Jonathan Smoke

Smoke and national real estate trends

Smoke is a 21-year veteran of the housing industry and has been the chief economist at realtor.com® since 2014. He loves real estate and interpreting data and trends into relevant insights for the industry and consumers.

In 2015, Housing Wire described Smoke as part of a new wave of economists shaking up the status quo. He travels across the country for industry events, using realtor.com’s data and popular music to explain housing trends.

His style and his following makes local and national media – REALTOR® Magazine, Housing Wire, the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Business Week, CNBC, Fortune and USA Today – seek him as a source for stories.  Earlier this year, Inman News named him one of “the 21 most interesting people in real estate.”

Prior to joining realtor.com®, Smoke was the chief economist of Hanley Wood, an information and media company serving the residential, commercial design and construction industries.  Under his leadership, Hanley Wood expanded its coverage of housing through innovative processing of public records, household level demographic data and consumer survey data combined with proprietary field collected data.

His presentation will focus on national real estate and the economy.

Other items on the agenda

In addition to Hewings and Smoke, Illinois REALTORS® CEO Gary Clayton will review proposed license law amendments, while Director of Legal Services and Legal Hotline Attorney Betsy Urbance and Sorling Northrup Attorney Jeff Baker will conduct a panel discussion on important issues and answer questions from attendees.

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