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October survey shows economies in Iowa and Midwest still struggling

October survey shows economies in Iowa and Midwest still struggling
October survey shows economies in Iowa and Midwest still struggling

Professor Ernie Goss (pictured Creighton)

The monthly survey of business leaders in Iowa and eight other states finds the region’s economy remains weak and has improved only marginally. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says the survey ranks the economy on a scale of zero to 100, with 50 being neutral for growth.

“The overall index rose from 52.7 in September to 53.1 in October, but this is only the second increase in the last seven months,” says Goss, “so I would still place the economy manufacturing of the middle states of America in a slow to- no stage of growth.

Iowa’s overall business conditions index for October fell below neutral growth at 49.8 from 50.9 in September.

Sourcing managers across the region were asked what they saw as their biggest hurdles for the rest of the year and Goss says their responses focused on four key areas.

“Supply chain disruptions remain the number one challenge, a third said,” says Goss. “Labour shortages, about a quarter said so. Higher input costs, of course, growing there. This increased significantly from last month to nearly a third, and then interest rate hikes also increased as the Federal Reserve raised rates.

A telling factor in the October survey, according to Goss, is how the economic confidence index is at its lowest point since March 2020, when the general impact of the pandemic was felt for the first time. Additionally, hiring levels in Iowa and across the region are still lagging. .

“Part of that, just the inability to get the workers, to find the workers, to hire the workers, that’s a big, big problem,” Goss says. “Regional employment is still down from pre-COVID levels, and we are seeing a loss since COVID of approximately 77,000 workers in the nine-state region.”

Inflation rates are still high, but Goss says they are falling and are now at the lowest level since August 2020. He predicts inflation could hit 6% in the fourth quarter.

. A October survey shows the savings Iowa Midwest are still difficulty

. October survey shows economies Iowa Midwest struggling

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