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Simon Medcalfe, PhD - Augusta University. Augusta, GA, US

Simon Medcalfe, PhD

Professor | Augusta University


Dr. Simon Medcalfe is an economist with an emphasis on sports economics, social determinants of health, and the local economy.




Simon Medcalfe, PhD Publication Simon Medcalfe, PhD Publication







Medcalfe is a Professor of Economics and Finance in the James M. Hull College of Business at Augusta University. He holds a Ph.D. in business and economics from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA and a Master of Science degree in finance from Leicester University in England. He has published academic articles in the areas of sports and health economics and economic education as well as contributing to labor economics and entrepreneurial finance textbooks.

Areas of Expertise (3)

Community and Economic Development

Social Determinants of Health

Sports Economics

Accomplishments (4)

Educational Innovation Award

Office of Faculty Development and Teaching Excellence, 2018

Outstanding Faculty Award

James M. Hull College of Business, 2018

Distinguished Service Award

The Graduate School, Augusta University, 2016

Outstanding Educator Award

Federation of Business Disciplines, 2016

Education (3)

Lehigh University: Ph.D., Business/Managerial Economics 2006

University of Leicester: M.S., Finance, General 1998

University of Leicester: B.A., Economics, General 1991

Media Appearances (14)

Multi-million dollar hiring plan

Augusta Business Daily  online


One of the Augusta area’s largest employers is hanging out the “Help Wanted” sign. Augusta University’s targeted student enrollment growth means the university itself needs to grow. Just over $6 million will be allocated for the immediate addition of 43 new faculty, 24 new full-time staff, two temporary positions, and 42 new student-worker positions. A portion will be used to add infrastructure supporting the new hires. The university needs additional faculty and staff after notching a student enrollment of 10,546 for fall 2023. That is a 7.5% increase over fall 2022.

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Peering into the economic outlook crystal ball

Augusta Business Daily  online


Augusta University (AU) continued a longtime tradition of putting a spotlight on the area economy over the past year and predictions for the coming year. Dr. Simon Medcalfe led the university’s annual Economic Forecast breakfast on Thursday. Medcalfe, a professor of economics at AU and contributor for the Augusta Business Daily, began with an overview of changes in types of business, percentage of employment, and population growth.

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AU Economics professor, Augusta/Aiken staffing company speak on inflation

WJBF  tv


The rate of inflation remains high in the U.S., and it continues to impact businesses and consumers in our area. Augusta University Economics Professor Simon Medcalfe said recent interest rate increases are meant to discourage spending and lower the inflation rate. But it could be years until we start seeing see those impacts.

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Uncertainties cloud Augusta's 2022 economic outlook

Augusta Chronicle  print


The Augusta area’s economic outlook for 2022 will be at the mercy of a sluggish overall job market and difficult-to-predict factors such as inflation and COVID-19.

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Augusta University holds 14th Annual Economic Forecast Breakfast

WFXG  tv


Augusta University held its 14th Annual Economic Forecast Breakfast Thursday. It's an event through the James H. Hull College of Business. Dr. Simon Medcalfe, a professor of economics, shared his analysis of Augusta's economy, as well as predictions for 2022.

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Inflation rate impacting CSRA residents

WJBF  tv


“Inflation can take a while to get under control,” Dr. Simon Medcalfe, a professor at Augusta University, explained. “It depends on policies that are put in place by the Federal Reserve. I think they’ll start raising interest rates quicker than they had planned.”

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Augusta Chronicle  print


“The bigger question is, why are people who are not in work not want a job? Why are they not working?” said Dr. Simon Medcalfe, professor of economics at Augusta University’s Hull College of Business. “That’s why unemployment is still very low but it has not reached back to pre-pandemic levels because there must be a number of people locally, nationally, who are no longer in the workforce or looking for work.”

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What would getting rid of the state income tax actually do?

WFXG  tv


Last week, former Senator and Republican gubernatorial candidate David Perdue told FOX54 in an exclusive interview that one of his priorities if elected would be to eliminate the state income tax. “Other states have done it," he says." There are nine states that do not have a state income tax, Mississippi’s House of Representatives just passed a bill to do that. So we’re going to be very active in trying to do that.” The state income tax is like the federal income tax and it's a tax on earnings. It's also one of the state's largest sources of revenue. Simon Medcalfe, a professor of business at Augusta University, says the state would need to replace the income tax if it were eliminated. “The state can’t afford to not have an income tax and not replace it," he says. "For example, it supports a lot of the K-12 education system and lots of other things like that.”

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Help wanted: Augusta-area job market still falling short of pre-pandemic levels

Augusta Chronicle  print


The Augusta area’s job numbers are still below what they were before the COVID-19 pandemic. More Georgians – 5,068,389 – are employed now than in any other time in the state’s history, the Georgia Department of Labor announced in late March. The average February jobless rate was 3.9% in Richmond County and the 11 other neighboring counties comprising the Central Savannah River Area Regional Commission. But most job sectors in and around Augusta have fewer employees now than they did two years ago. The federal government’s Atlanta-Richmond County Metropolitan Statistical Area is composed of Richmond, Columbia, Burke, McDuffie and Lincoln counties in Georgia, and Aiken and Edgefield counties in South Carolina. Within it, the U.S. Department of Labor reports that the area has 239,500 nonfarm workers.

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Labor shortage impacts job hunters in CSRA

WJBF  tv


There’s no shortage of available jobs right now. Everywhere you go, it seems employers are looking for new workers. So how do you find the job that best suits you? “The chamber we kind of pride our self of being a hub of information and place of resources for our local businesses and whether it be helping find employees or advocating for their business we’re here for them” said Columbia county chamber of commerce President and CEO Russell Lahodny. And the same goes for college students who are job hunting. Augusta University business professor Dr.Simon Medcalfe says businesses are always looking for students to work for them. “Job openings are high so there are a lot of opportunities for college students. I was talking to a former student just the other weekend people were calling here to go to work “ said Medcalfe.

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Mortgage rates hit 20-year high

WFXG  tv


Mortgage rates are the highest they've been in two decades, around 7%, more than four times the low rate in 2021. During the COVID pandemic, so few people were buying homes that low demand led to the lowest interest rates in decades. Dr. Simon Medcalfe, an economics professor at Augusta University says the rates are affected by changes the Federal Reserve has made to combat inflation. The Reserve has increased interest rates several times this year, as recently as September. “The Federal Reserve is raising interest rates, specifically the federal funds rate, which isn’t the mortgage rate, but it has knock-on effects all through the credit markets,” explains Medcalfe.

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Healthcare, computer sectors to drive Augusta job growth in next decade, expert predicts

Augusta Chronicle  print


Augusta’s healthcare and cybersecurity job sectors are poised for growth over the next decade. Dr. Simon Medcalfe, a professor with Augusta University’s Hull College of Business, noted as much on Thursday in his 15th Annual Economic Forecast for the Augusta area.

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How much income does it take to reach Georgia's top 1%? Less than you might think

Augusta Chronicle  print


The climb to reach one-percenter status in Georgia might not be as high as you think. If you make over $586,200 a year, you are in the top 1% of Georgians, according to a new survey. Those who make more than $243,000 a year cross the threshold for the top 5% in the state. The per capita income in Georgia, meanwhile, was $34,516 according to the Census Bureau's five year estimate from 2017-2021. The average American household earns a median income of less than $70,000. Less than 10% of all households earn more than $200,000.

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Boom or bust: How would Augusta fair in a recession?

Augusta Chronicle  print


With talk of national default, rising interest rates, high inflation, and a strong labor market, it's not entirely clear what is happening with the economy right now. But if the worst should happen, Augusta may be a little more insulated, even if it does not entirely avoid a hit. Augusta may not always soar as high as the rest of the state, but the region tends to ride out dips in the economy a little bit better, according to Simon Medcalfe, professor at Augusta University. "I've heard this since I moved here and I moved here in 2004," Medcalfe said. "You know, we don't see the peaks as high as some other places, but we don't see the troughs."

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Answers (4)

How has the chances for a recession changed in the last three months? 

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“I think the chances of recession have probably slipped a little. I think there’s less chance of a recession. Inflation is certainly still a concern. It’s running at 3.2%, which sounds kind of low, but because of the amount of inflation, we’ve had prices about 20% higher than two years ago, and it’s still a concern and still eating into people’s wages.”

What's the difference between frictional and structural unemployment?

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"Economist talk about frictional unemployment and structural unemployment. Frictional unemployment is more of a job match or job search problem. So it’s a lack of information. Structural unemployment is because of the changing nature of industry within an economy.An example being people working in textile manufacturing and it’s hard for them to go straight into computer science coding because they don’t have the skills. This is more long term than frictional and in some cases can be quite detrimental to regions and people.”

The economy needs to slow down a little, doesn’t it?

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“I mean, yes, if you’re thinking about the Fed, that’s what they are worried about right now, inflation, because the economy is so incredibly hot, particularly with regards to prices. They’re raising interest rates with the aim at slowing down the economy. Unemployment is historically very, very low, if not at record levels in different places, so we could probably sustain a little slowing of the economy without impacting the labor market too much and try to get this general inflation under control.”

Articles (8)

Composite Index Ranking of Economic Well-Being in U.S. Metropolitan Areas: How Prevalent are Rank Anomalies?

Social Indicators Research

2021 Composite indicators have the advantage of summarizing complex multi-dimensional concepts in a single measurement. They also suffer from disadvantages such as subjectivity in choice of indicators, weighting, and aggregation methods. In this paper, we update Medcalfe’s Economic Well-Being (EWB) index of US Metropolitan Statistical Areas with the latest (2017) available data.

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Sustainable practices and financial performance in fashion firms

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management

2021 The purpose of this paper is to determine the relationship between sustainable practices and financial performance in fashion firms. A statistical analysis (fixed effects and ordinary least squares) of publicly available financial data combined with sustainable practices taken from the Baptist World Aid Australia Ethical Fashion Reports to determine if companies with better sustainable practices have significantly better financial performance.

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Racial Segregation as a Social Determinant of Health: Evidence from the State of Georgia

Journal of the Georgia Public Health Association

2020 Despite decades of research, determining the causes of racial disparities in health remains a pernicious problem in the public health arena. Challenges include further refining definitions of health as well as expanding frameworks for social determinants of health to include relevant and related predictors. Racial segregation as a social determinant of health is understudied but of growing interest in the discourse on health disparities.

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Competitive balance in women’s collegiate cross country running

Applied Economics Letters

2019 Women started competing in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) cross country championships in 1981 and participation in Division 1 women’s cross country has increased by 174%. Using data covering 34 years of Division 1 championships we find some evidence that competitive balance in women’s races improved with increased participation although results are sensitive to how competitive balance is measured and how participation is counted.

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A reconsideration of operating-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis

Journal of Financial Economic Policy

2018 This paper aims to attempt to perform a test of the operating leverage-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis that is more methodologically consistent with the logical framing of the hypothesis appearing in the Mandelker and Rhee (1984) paper.

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The Effect of Foreign Players on Pay and Performance in Major League Soccer

FIT Publishing

2018 Over the last ten years, Major League Soccer (MLS) has attracted many overseas players. This study examines the role country of birth plays in salary determination, team performance on the pitch, and fan attendance in Major League Soccer for the 2007 through 2014 seasons. Players born in the U.S. earn less than equally productive foreign-born players. However, there is much heterogeneity amongst these foreign-born players. Players born in France, Gambia, Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, and Costa Rica earn salary premiums relative to their productivity.

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Estimating the implied discount rate: An application to multi-year nfl trades of draft picks

Journal of Economic and Social Measurement

2018 We estimate the implied discounted rate associated with trades of National Football League (NFL) draft picks that involve draft picks in different years. The NFL conducts an annual draft of draft-eligible college football players. NFL executives use draft charts to determine the value of each draft pick, and we use this draft chart to estimate the implied discount rate of trades combining current and future year draft picks.

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Economic Well-Being in U.S. Metropolitan Statistical Areas

Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement

2018 Abstract In recent years there has been increased interest from economists and policy makers to measure a nation’s economic well-being. This paper extends this development to US Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs). An economic well-being index is constructed using indicators of income, education, crime, health and pollution. The analysis allows comparison of a MSA with another and with itself over time.

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