Date of this Version
Prepared by the UNL College of Business, Bureau of Business Research
The Leading Economic Indicator – Nebraska (LEI-N) 1 rose by just 0.26% during May of 2018. The increase in the LEI-N, which is designed to predict economic activity six months into the future, suggests that the pace of economic growth will slow in Nebraska during the 4th quarter of 2018. The LEI-N rose due to strong business expectations. In particular, respondents to the May Survey of Nebraska Business reported plans to increase both sales and employment at their businesses over the next six months. There also was an increase in manufacturing hours and passenger enplanements during May and a drop in initial claims for unemployment insurance. A sharp increase in the value of the U.S. dollar, however, curtailed the increase in the leading indicator. A rising U.S. dollar puts additional pressure on Nebraska businesses which export. There also was a decline in building permits for single-family homes during May.