The July 2014 Oregon Regional Economic Indexes of was released today. Full report is available here. We thank KeyBank for their generous support of this project.
Economic activity across regional economies was mixed in July, with the Eugene-Springfield area leading the way during the month. Highlights of the report include:
- Moving average measures of activity—which smooth monthly volatility to identify the underlying trend—reveal that most regions in Oregon are growing near or above their average paces of activity, with the Rogue Valley remaining an exception with SOMEWHAT below normal growth. Still, upwardly revised employment data boosted the Rogue Valley measure and lessened the gap with other regions.
- Residential housing permit contributions varied between neutral or near neutral for the Portland, Eugene-Springfield and Central Oregon regions to negative for the Rogue Valley and Salem.
- Financial sector employment contributed negatively across all regions; employment in the sector has been in a persistent downtrend since the beginning of the most recent recession.
- Initial unemployment claims continue to contribute positively to the measures as they hover at levels consistent with strong job growth. Unemployment rates have fallen such that they now make a positive contribution to most measures of activity.
- Reminder: The regional measures are prone to potentially large swings due to the volatility of some of the underlying data, particularly measures of employment. The moving average measures smooth out much of that volatility.
Dan Mogck, Senior Vice President of Business Banking, KeyBank, adds “The regional indexes indicate varied, but generally growing, economic activity, which is consistent with what we see and hear from our clients. Overall, what is reflected in our client’s financial statements and in our loan demand supports the economic activity indicated by the moving average measures.”