DETROIT — Comerica Bank’s Michigan Economic Activity Index declined in April, falling 0.9 points to a level of 102.0. The April index reading is 43 points, or 72 percent, above the index cyclical low of 59.9 at the bottom of the last recession.
The index has averaged 101 points in 2012, 10 points above the index average for all of 2011. The March index reading was revised to 102.9.
“Following three months of sharp increases, our Michigan Economic Activity Index paid back some of its gains in April,” said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. “A downshift in U.S. economic momentum, visible beginning in March, may take a little steam out of auto sales and production over the summer months, but this will not be enough to roll back recent gains to the Michigan economy.”
The Michigan Economic Activity Index consists of seven variables: nonfarm payrolls, exports, sales tax revenues, hotel occupancy rates, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, building permits, and motor vehicle production.
All data are seasonally adjusted, as necessary, and indexed to a base year, 2004 — the economic activity that year is equal to 100 on the index. The index also converts current dollars to constant dollar values. Index levels are expressed in terms of three-month moving averages.
Comerica Bank, with 218 banking centers in Michigan, is a subsidiary of Comerica Inc. (NYSE: CMA), a financial services company headquartered in Dallas, Texas.
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You can follow Comerica Chief Economist Robert Dye on Twitter at @Comerica_Econ.