Marc Benioff

Salesforce.com CEO: The U.S. recovery is stronger than you think

January 31, 2014: 3:07 PM ET

More than four years after the Great Recession, the economy is healing. And it could only get better.

By Marc Benioff

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FORTUNE -- If I had written a title for President Obama's State of the Union address this week, it would be called "America Rising." When he leaves office in 2017, the U.S. will have experienced a period of critical economic recovery. By the end of 2016, Fannie Mae estimates the housing market will grow more than 17%, and the Federal Reserve estimates that the unemployment rate will be well below 6%. GDP is expected to grow at 3%, while Standard & Poor's 500 index has already seen a phenomenal gain of more than 150%. And more positive news is coming for America: We will have pulled ourselves out of the recession, and our economy will be back on track.

At its annual meeting last week, leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, articulated that the U.S. innovation trinity of technology, energy, and housing is prepared to drive our domestic economy well into the next decade. The software economy alone is already responsible for creating approximately half a million jobs in the U.S. And the advancements in next-generation domestic hardware manufacturing will create even more. For example, the new Apple Mac Pro (AAPL) is made in Texas -- not Asia -- for the first time in a decade. Through concentrated re-shoring efforts, we are bringing jobs back to the U.S. -- especially in manufacturing and energy. This was unheard of five years ago.

MORE: Inequality: America's great destroyer

The plan is working and we have consistent momentum. But we all still have a lot of hard work ahead of us. It is paramount that we focus on our domestic affairs, including education from pre-kindergarten to university, as well as deficit reduction, H-1B visa expansion, and patent reform. As business leaders, we need to collaborate with Washington, and take responsibility for the rebuilding of our local communities. We must all contribute our ideas, time, and resources to improve the lives of everyone in our local communities for the economy to continue to improve.

Now, more than ever, we must harness this period of economic growth to improve the lives of all Americans.

America is rising, with certainty.

Marc Benioff is chairman and CEO of salesforce.com (CRM).

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