Comerica Bank’s Michigan Index Eases Again

Comerica Bank’s Michigan Economic Activity Index fell in September, down 0.9 percentage points to a level of 128.1. September’s reading is 54 points, or 73 percent, above the index cyclical low of 74.1. The index averaged 123.6 points for all of 2015, five and four-fifths points above the index average for 2014. August’s index reading was 129.0.

“The Comerica Bank Michigan Economic Activity Index declined in September, for the third consecutive month. A reset in housing starts in late summer, after surging earlier in the year, was a persistent weight on the Michigan Index through the third quarter. In September only three out of eight index components were positive. They were nonfarm payrolls, state exports and hotel occupancy. Claims for unemployment insurance (inverted), housing starts, house prices, auto production and state sales tax revenues all declined for the month. We look for only modest momentum in the Michigan economy through early next year as auto production starts to ease in the state,” said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. “Most major auto makers expect slight declines in U.S. auto sales through 2017, and small car production is being shifted out of the state, so manufacturing employment is expected to be a drag on the state economy next year.”

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For a PDF version of the Michigan Economic Activity Index click here: michigan_1116.

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