Nebraska’s Leading Economic Indicator rose in December, according to the most recent report from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Designed to predict economic activity six months into the future, it increased by 1%.
"The increase in the leading indicator suggests that the Nebraska economy will grow at a moderate pace in the first half of 2024," said economist Eric Thompson, department chair, K.H. Nelson College Professor of Economics and director of Bureau of Business Research.
The six components of Nebraska’s Leading Economic Indicator include business expectations, building permits for single-family homes, airline passenger counts, initial claims for unemployment insurance, the value of the U.S. dollar and manufacturing hours worked.
Three of six indicator components improved significantly during December. Airline passenger counts rose during the month.
"An increase in leisure travel implies that households feel confident about their jobs and income, while an increase in business travel suggests that firms are coordinating new activity with customers and suppliers,” according to Thompson.
Business expectations also were positive in Nebraska during December.
“Nebraska businesses reported plans to increase both sales and employment over the next six months,” said Thompson.
The value of the U.S. dollar also fell in December, which is advantageous for Nebraska businesses which compete in international markets.
The full report and a technical report describing the indicators are available at the Bureau of Business Research website, https://bbr.unl.edu.
Published: January 24, 2024