Oct 30 - Comerica Bank's Michigan Economic Activity Index dipped in August, declining 1.2 points, to a level of 106.6. The August index reading is 47 points, or 78 percent, above the index cyclical low of 59.9. The index has averaged 104 points thus far in 2012, 13 points above the index average for all of 2011.
"Following a rapid climb of nearly six points over the last three months, our Michigan Economic Activity Index paid back some of its recent gains in August, declining by 1.2 points," said Robert Dye, chief economist at Comerica Bank. "Job creation and residential construction were flat in August, although both have been on an overall upward trend since earlier in the year. August U.S. vehicle sales were up to a 14.5 million unit rate, but vehicle production in Michigan slid in August. We already know that September vehicle sales increased to a 14.9 million unit rate, which is encouraging."
The Michigan Economic Activity Index consists of seven variables, as follows: nonfarm payrolls, exports, sales tax revenues, hotel occupancy rates, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, building permits and motor vehicle production. All data are seasonally adjusted, as necessary, and indexed to a base year of 2004. Nominal values have been converted to constant dollar values. Index levels are expressed in terms of three-month moving averages.
Comerica Bank, with 216 banking centers 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. To find Comerica on Facebook, please visit www.facebook.com/ComericaCares. Follow Comerica Chief Economist Robert Dye on Twitter at @Comerica_Econ.