Economic growth should moderate in Nebraska in early 2017, according to the latest leading economic indicator report from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
The indicator, a composite of economic factors that predict economic growth six months into the future, rose by a modest 0.23 percent in July, after strong increases in March, April and June.
“This month’s leading indicator provides the first glimpse of Nebraska economic growth in early 2017,” said economist Eric Thompson, director of the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. “The indicator suggests that economic growth will moderate in Nebraska in January 2017, after strong growth at the end of 2016.”
July data point to a strong and improving Nebraska labor market. “The number of individuals making initial claims for unemployment insurance dropped in July while businesses reported plans to expand hiring over the next 6 months,” Thompson noted.
However, there also were some challenging findings in July. There was a modest drop in manufacturing hours and building permits for single-family homes during the month. There also was an increase in the value of the U.S. dollar; the third consecutive monthly increase. A rising dollar creates competitive pressure for Nebraska’s export-oriented businesses.
The leading economic indicator report is produced monthly by faculty and students in the Economics Department and the Bureau of Business Research in UNL’s College of Business Administration.