Claremore Daily Progress

Business

September 4, 2012

ECONOMY: Oklahoma to add more jobs, but at slower rate

OMAHA, Neb. — The Institute for Supply Management, formerly the Purchasing Management Association, began formally surveying its membership in 1931 to gauge business conditions.

The Creighton Economic Forecasting Group uses the same methodology as the national survey to consult supply managers and business leaders. Creighton University economics professor Ernie Goss oversees the report.

The overall index ranges between 0 and 100. Growth neutral is 50, and a figure greater than 50 indicates an expanding economy over the next three to six months.

Here are the state-by-state results of the August survey in the Mid-America region:

Oklahoma: Oklahoma’s overall index rose to 53.6 from 52.7 in July. Components of the August index were new orders at 56.3, production or sales at 52.3, delivery lead time at 56.3, inventories at 49.4 and employment at 53.6. “Durable- and nondurable-goods manufacturers in the state, especially those linked to energy, continue to experience healthy growth,” Goss said. Oklahoma’s employment level is 0.5 percent above its pre-recession level. “I expect the state to continue to add jobs in the next three to six months, but at a slower pace than that experienced in the first half of 2012,” Goss said.

Arkansas: The overall index for Arkansas slipped to 51.2 from 52.4 in July. Components were new orders at 40.3, production or sales at 55.9, delivery lead time at 50.7, inventories at 51.0 and employment at 58.0. “Our surveys over the past several months show a state economy that is likely to continue to expand, but at a pace that will create few jobs, leaving the unemployment rate little changed from its current level,” Goss said. “I expect Arkansas to end the year with employment down by approximately 40,000 (jobs), or 3.5 percent, from its pre-recession level.”

Iowa: Iowa’s overall index dropped to 57.1 from July’s 62.1. The index has remained above growth neutral for the past 32 months. Components of the index for August were new orders at 65.0, production or sales at 56.2, delivery lead time at 55.2, employment at 56.4 and inventories at 52.6. “While the full impact of the drought has yet to weigh heavily on Iowa’s economy, I expect that to change in the months ahead as businesses linked to agriculture experience a downturn in sales. I expect Iowa to end the year still down almost 32,000 jobs, or 2.1 percent, from its pre-recession level,” he said.

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