R.I.’s LEI index up 1% in Oct., its biggest gain since March ’12

An index of Rhode Island’s leading economic indicators produced by Providence Business News and e-forecasting.com rose 1 percent in October to 123.9 from 122.7 in September. More

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R.I.’s LEI index up 1% in Oct., its biggest gain since March ’12

COURTESY E-FORECASTING.COM
RHODE ISLAND'S Leading Economic Indicator Index -- produced jointly by Providence Business News and e-forecasting.com -- continued its six-month climb in October, rising 1 percent to 123.9 compared with 122.7 a month earlier.
Posted 12/2/13

PROVIDENCE – An index of Rhode Island’s leading economic indicators produced by Providence Business News and e-forecasting.com rose 1 percent in October to 123.9 from 122.7 in September.

The 1 percent increase in October – the biggest gain since March 2012, when the index rose 1.1 percent – followed an increase of 0.7 percent in September, signifying an acceleration of the coming economic growth in the state. October was the sixth consecutive month of improvement in Rhode Island’s leading economic indicators.

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.

Eight of the nine components made a positive contribution to Rhode Island’s economy in October, including: unemployment claims, weekly hours in manufacturing, manufacturing exports, regional consumer expectations, national stock prices, the interest rate spread, the national orders index and the state employment barometer.

A reading of 100 on the Providence Business News/e-forecasting.com Leading Economic Indicator Index is equivalent to the state’s activity in 2000. In October 2012, the leading indicator index was 119.

October marked the first time since April that the state employment barometer registered a positive contribution on the Leading Economic Indicator Index. It was also the first time in 2013 that all but one of the nine indicators made positive contributions.

The sole component to make a negative contribution to the index in October was building permits.

In October, Rhode Island’s six-month growth rate – “a signal of turning points” – was 5.3 percent, edging up from September’s revised rate of 4 percent.

By comparison, the long-term annual growth rate for the index was 1.9 percent, the same as the annual growth rate of the state’s overall economic activity.

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