Leading economic indicators continue to rise in September

AN INDEX OF Rhode Island's leading economic indicators increased 0.5 percent in September to 120.5, with a reading of 100 being equivalent to the state's activity in 2000.
Posted 11/2/12

PROVIDENCE – An index of Rhode Island’s leading economic indicators produced by Providence Business News and rose to 120.5 in September.

A reading of 100 on the Providence Business News/ Leading Economic Indicator Index is equivalent to the state’s activity in 2000.

The state leading indicator edged up 0.5 percent in September after rising 0.2 percent in August.

The economic indicator index uses nine statistics to forecast the direction of the state’s economy over the next three to six months. Positive numbers signal growth while negative numbers denote contraction.

Six of the nine statistics had positive contributions to the index in September, including: unemployment claims, weekly hours in manufacturing, building permits, regional consumer expectations, national stock prices and interest rate speed.

Three components negatively contributed to Rhode Island’s growth in September, including: exports of manufactures, the national orders index and the state’s employment barometer.

In September, Rhode Island’s six-month growth rate – “a signal of turning points” – was 4.2 percent, a rise from the 3.9 percent rate in August.

By comparison, the long-term annual growth rate for the index was 2 percent, the same as the annual growth rate of the state’s overall economic activity.

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