WHAT: Despite rising steadily from April through July of this year, Rhode Island’s Current Conditions Index (CCI) for August reflected a slip in the state’s economic momentum, as it dropped sharply to 67 from its highest possible value of 100 in July. Despite the lower value, URI Professor of Economics Leonard Lardaro notes that this does not signal a decline in activity. The CCI has remained in expansion territory since April, says Lardaro – so activity continues to improve, albeit at a slower pace. Eight of 12 economic indicators continued to show improvement relative to their position this time last year – among them, Retail Sales, Manufacturing Hours, Manufacturing Wage, New Claims for unemployment insurance and Benefits Exhaustion. Lardaro expects the expansion to continue for the foreseeable future but estimates the Rhode Island economy is still at least two years away from returning to where it was pre-pandemic.
WHO: URI Professor of Economics Leonard Lardaro, creator and author of the Current Conditions Index.
WHEN: October 18, 2021. (No embargo)
HOW: Use attached information, including summary and charts prepared by Lardaro for news reports. He is available for broadcast and print interviews. Lardaro will be blogging about the new labor data during the coming weeks. Additional information and historical data available online: http://www.llardaro.com/current.htm.
FOR INFORMATION: Leonard Lardaro, office, 401-874-4128, home, 401-783-9563.
Dawn Bergantino, URI Department of Communications and Marketing, 401-874-4147.
BACKGROUND: The Current Conditions Index, created by Lardaro, measures the strength of the present economic climate in Rhode Island by following the behavior of 12 indicators.