Economic Data Release by Simon Medcalfe, PhD, Associate Professor of Finance and Economics
In April the Augusta Leading Economic Index (LEI) decreased 0.1% from March although it remains 1.0% higher than April 2017. In April residential housing permits and job openings decreased while initial claims for unemployment insurance increased as did energy prices.
The Labor Market Index (LMI) increased 0.1% from March and is 1.8% higher than April last year. Employment fell (on a seasonally adjusted basis) from March but the unemployment rate fell to 4.3%. Average weekly earnings declined to their lowest level, $776, since October 2013.