DALLAS, Sept. 25, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Michigan Economic Activity Index increased in July to a level of 118.0. July's reading was 20 points, or 21 percent, above the index cyclical low of 97.9. The index averaged 118.4 points for all of 2018, which was unchanged from the index average for 2017. June's index reading was 117.7.
Comerica Bank's Michigan Economic Activity Index ticked up in July after increasing in June. This is the first back-to-back gain for the Michigan Index since late 2017. The five positive components for July were housing starts, house prices, light vehicle production, total state trade and hotel occupancy. The three declining sub-indexes were unemployment insurance claims (inverted), industrial electricity demand and state sales tax revenue. Nonfarm employment was essentially unchanged in July and has been little changed since January of this year. The absence of job growth in 2019 is not unique to Michigan. Several other Midwest and East Coast states are also showing little-to-no job growth this year, despite ongoing gains at the national level. Unemployment insurance claims for Michigan have steadily increased since late 2018, meaning that our unemployment insurance claims index for Michigan has steadily declined. Industrial electricity demand also remains below its peak from December 2014. Likewise, light vehicle production remains below its peak from August 2016. Adding to the drag on the Michigan economy is the UAW/GM strike which is now in its second week. We are seeing more reports of layoffs upstream in the supply chain from GM, so the economic impact of the strike is spreading. An extended strike would weigh on the economies of many states, including Michigan.
The Michigan Economic Activity Index consists of nine variables, as follows: nonfarm payroll employment, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, housing starts, house price index, industrial electricity sales, auto assemblies, total trade, hotel occupancy and sales tax revenue. All data are seasonally adjusted. Nominal values have been converted to constant dollar values. Index levels are expressed in terms of three-month moving averages.
Comerica Bank, with one of the largest banking center networks in Michigan, is a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated (NYSE: CMA), a financial services company headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and strategically aligned by three business segments: The Business Bank, The Retail Bank, and Wealth Management. Comerica focuses on relationships, and helping people and businesses be successful. In addition to Michigan and Texas, Comerica Bank locations can be found in Arizona, California, and Florida, with select businesses operating in several other states, as well as in Canada and Mexico.
SOURCE Comerica Bank