Comerica Bank’s California Economic Activity Index increased by 0.9 of a percentage point in April to reach 129.7, marking more than a year of consecutive gains.
The index averaged 122.4 points in 2016.
“Our California Economic Activity Index increased in April, for the 14th consecutive month, said said Robert Dye, chief economist at Comerica Bank. “As we have seen in recent months, the results for April were mixed, but consistent with moderate overall growth in the state economy. Five out of eight index components were positive in April. They were unemployment insurance claims (inverted), housing starts, house prices, hotel occupancy and the Nasdaq 100 Technology stock index. State exports and defense spending were negatives in April, while nonfarm payrolls were neutral. Job growth in the state has clearly slowed down in 2017. For the year ending in April, California payroll employment had gained 1.4 percent, slightly below the national average of 1.5 percent growth. The previously red-hot San Francisco housing market is showing signs of cooling as area housing prices eased in April," Dye said.
The California Economic Activity Index consists of eight variables, as follows: nonfarm payrolls, exports, hotel occupancy rates, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, housing starts, national defense spending, house prices, and the NASDAQ-100-Technology Sector Index (NDXT). All data are seasonally adjusted, as necessary, and indexed to a base year of 2008. Nominal values have been converted to constant dollar values. Index levels are expressed in terms of three-month moving averages.
Comerica Bank, with key California locations including San Diego, San Francisco and the East Bay, San Jose, Los Angeles, Orange County, and the Inland Empire, is a subsidiary of Comerica Inc. based in Dallas.