A July increase in Nebraska’s leading economic indicator suggests consistent economic growth for Nebraska through the end of 2015 and into 2016.
The modest increase of 0.17 percent is the fifth increase in the last six months.
“The July increase resulted from positive business expectations, an increase in passenger enplanements, and growth in single-family home building permits,” said economist Eric Thompson, director of the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. “Respondents to the July Survey of Nebraska Business were positive about growth in sales and employment at their businesses over the next six months.”
Other components of the leading indicator, however, had a dampening effect. Along with a slight increase in first-time unemployment claims and a modest drop in manufacturing hours, July saw a sharp increase in the value of the U.S. dollar.
Because of its potential impact on exports, the dollar’s value bears watching in coming months, Thompson said.
“A rising U.S. dollar creates challenges for Nebraska’s export-oriented businesses,” he said. “It will be important to track whether the value of the U.S. dollar continues to rise.”
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.
The full report and a technical report describing the indicators are available at the UNL Bureau of Business Research website, http://www.bbr.unl.edu.