Date of this Version
Prepared by the UNL College of Business Administration, Department of Economics
The Leading Economic Indicator – Nebraska (LEI-N) fell by 0.12% in December 2015. The slight decline in the LEI-N, which predicts economic growth in the state six months in the future, suggests that economic growth in Nebraska will be solid, rather than strong, during the first half of 2016. The decline follows significant increases in the LEI-N in both October and November. Among components of the indicator, the value of the U.S. dollar rose during December. A higher U.S. dollar reduces the competitiveness of Nebraska exporters in manufacturing and agriculture. There also was a decline in airline passenger counts and manufacturing hours during December, as well as a slight decrease in building permits for single-family homes. Initial claims for unemployment insurance changed little during December on a seasonally-adjusted basis. Finally, business expectations were a positive factor during December. Respondents to the Survey of Nebraska Business predicted growth in employment over the next 6 months.