TYLER – An optimistic evaluation of the 2018 economy, from East Texas to across the nation, has been painted by noted economist Ray Perryman. The appraisal came in Tyler luncheon Thursday at his annual speech on the economic outlook. It was the largest crowd ever to attend the luncheon. They had to bring in extra tables and chairs. Perryman sees a 4.5% increase in gross domestic product in the Tyler area. That is compared to a 4% percent increase in Texas, and a 2.9% percent increase in the nation. Perryman said the Texas economy is generally doing better than the national economy. He said the Texas economy grew faster because of the rebound in the oil and gas industry. Perryman added, the state’s economy depends on undocumented immigrants, and that poverty in the Hispanic community is a major social issue Texas will need to address.