Glass Expo Midwest™ 2014 opened today at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel in Schaumburg (Chicago), Ill., with a keynote session from William Greiner, chief investment officer at Mariner Wealth Advisors, who provided a market outlook, both globally and here in the U.S.

He began by telling attendees that the unemployment rate will be less than seven percent by the end of the year.

“We won’t see deterioration in the employment picture and it will get better,” he said.

Looking at the market globally, he said European recessions are a lot different than in the United States.

“They are coming out of it now. Japan is [also] going to start turning around, and will grow right around two percent,” he said and added that areas of the world starting to slip are emerging markets. He said China’s growth rate is going down as it is not as contributive as it once was.

Why is it weak? He questioned, and said the ability to transact is there but for some of these markets the willingness to transact is missing.

“The economy won’t get to a trend growth profile until we get this cleared up,” he said. “Small business people seem to be a pretty optimistic lot. You have faith in the future. You are risk takers … getting to a more normalized environment, but not quite there yet.”

Greiner told his audience that our [nation’s] manufacturing businesses are continuing to expand.

“We have turned ourselves into a high cost manufacturing center. The U.S. now has an advantage from an energy standpoint over overseas competitors,” he said. “Manufacturing has had three straight years where that number is going up and that is the first time in 40 years. This is a positive trend we are noting in the economy. Manufacturing is coming back in the U.S. GDP will accelerate over next two years.”

Glass Expo Midwest™, now in its 18th year, opened today in Schaumburg, Ill., at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel in Chicago (Schaumburg), Ill. The two-day architectural glass event runs through tomorrow.

The event will feature the latest cutting-edge products, networking opportunities, educational seminars and more, conveniently in one location.

Following is an overview of the event schedule:

Thursday, October 31
9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. Coffee Break (sponsored by JLM Wholesale)
9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Seminars and Workshops
3:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Glass Expo Midwest™ Tradeshow
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Halloween Cocktail Party on the Show Floor

Friday, November 1
8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Coffee Break (sponsored by JLM Wholesale)
8:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Seminars and Workshops
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Glass Expo Midwest™ Tradeshow

For the full GEMS event schedule, please visit the Schedule at a Glance on the official event website.