Nebraska’s Leading Economic Indicator rose by 1.99% in April. This sharp increase suggests strong growth in the Nebraska economy during the second half of 2015.
“The sharp increase in the LEI-N reflects strong business expectations, a recent decline in the value of the U.S. Dollar, and a decline initial claims for unemployment insurance,” said economist Eric Thompson, director of the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
“The drop in the value of the U.S. dollar in April provides some relief to Nebraska’s export businesses,” according to Thompson. “The dollar had risen for 8 consecutive months prior to April, creating competitive pressures for exporters in agriculture and manufacturing.”
The outlook also has brightened for other types of businesses, according to the April Survey of Nebraska Business
. “Respondents to the survey were very optimistic for growth in sales and employment at their businesses over the next six months.”
A sharp decline in initial claims for unemployment insurance provided further evidence that the labor market is strengthening.
Other components of the LEI-N changed very little in April, including building permits for single family homes, passenger enplanements, and manufacturing hours.
May Leading Economic Indicator - Nebraska Report