Updated February 28 at 11:28am

New economic indicator forecasts growth for R.I. but not enough to replace jobs


SMITHFIELD – A new economic indicator unveiled on Tuesday revealed that Rhode Island’s economy is expected to growth in the next two quarters but at a pace that is well below what is required to replace jobs lost in 2007.

The Current Economic Indicator, released by Bryant University and the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council, said growth is expected in the next two quarters at a 1.8 percent annualized rate.

In the fourth quarter, Rhode Island’s economy expanded 1.4 percent from the previous quarter.

“The recent expansion of the current economic index can be mostly attributed to external economic forces, rather than internal growth in the local economy,” a briefing on the indicator said, citing the economic recovery in New England and nationally as boosting the CEI. Weekly initial unemployment claims declined, for example, but the number of Rhode Island-based jobs has been flat or declining.

Factors contributing negatively to the CEI included: a decline in construction employment, poor performance by the leisure and hospitality sector, and “the overall depressed level of local aggregate demand” which is influenced by general sales and gross receipt tax revenue in the state.

Wage and salary disbursements had a neutral effect on the CEI which uses nine components to take the pulse of the local economy.

The fourth quarter CEI, 1.44 percent, is a decline from the previous quarter’s 1.84 percent but higher than second quarter’s 0.32 percent and first quarter’s 0.14 percent.

The Rhode Island Current Economic Indicator was unveiled on Tuesday by Edinaldo Tebaldi, assistant professor of economics at Bryant University, during the university’s economic forum on the state’s business climate.


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The ones being left behind in this recovery are mostly local under-educated Rhode Islanders with there nasty personalities. I have zero sympathy for them. I know I go out of my way to not hire any of them. It's pretty simple really. Just make every job you are trying to fill have some college education requirement. Here in the educated professional world, things are steadily improving. Everyone I know has a job. Rhode Island if finally starting to move forward and leaving those that killed this state behind. (Yeah, that means you Mr. & Mrs. High School diploma only or dropout.) But don't fret. Sooner or later there will be enough folks like me around to facilitate the need to open up a new Cumberland Farms that will need cashiers. Those are the jobs most locals are qualified for anyway. But tell them that and they'll blame everyone else but themselves.

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