Economic growth will slow in Nebraska during the 4th quarter of 2018, according to the most recent leading economic indicator report from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
The indicator, a composite of economic factors that predict economic growth six months into the future, rose by just 0.26 percent during May of 2018.
“While the leading indicator has risen every month during 2018, the pace of monthly increases is declining,” said economist Eric Thompson, director of the Bureau of Business Research at the university. “The Nebraska economy will continue to expand, but at a slower pace.”
A rising U.S. dollar is the primary factor limiting growth in the leading indicator. “There was a sharp increase in the value of the U.S. dollar during May, which adds to the pressure on businesses which export,” according to Thompson. There also was a modest decline in building permits for single-family homes in May.
Business confidence was the main reason that the leading indicator rose. Respondents to the May Survey of Nebraska Business reported plans to increase both sales and employment at their businesses over the next six months. There also was an increase in manufacturing hours and airline passenger enplanements during May and a drop in initial claims for unemployment insurance.