Comerica Bank’s Michigan Economic Activity Index dipped slightly in March, declining half of a percentage point to 101.7. The March index reading is 42 points, or 70 percent, above the index cyclical low of 59.9. The index averaged 101 points in the first quarter of 2012, 10 points above the index average for all of 2011.
“After jumping sharply higher in February, our Michigan Economic Activity Index dipped slightly in March, reflecting cooler auto sector activity. We expect the auto sector to remain vigorous through 2012, and we expect that Michigan will hang on to gains driven by rebounding auto sales and production,” said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. “Challenging global macroeconomic conditions remain a concern, as do expected cuts in federal defense spending. Recently choppy U.S. economic data is not expected to significantly impair domestic auto sales.”