DALLAS, Jan. 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Texas Economic Activity Index advanced by 0.4 percentage points in October to a level of 91.0. October's index reading is 18 points, or 25 percent, above the index cyclical low of 72.8. The index averaged 97.5 points for all of 2015, seven and one-half points below the average for full-year 2014. September's index reading was 90.6.
"The Comerica Bank Texas Economic Activity Index improved again in October, building on its September turn-around. Six out of eight index components were positive in October. They were nonfarm employment, state exports, unemployment insurance claims (inverted), rig count, home prices and hotel occupancy. Housing starts eased in October for the third consecutive month. State sales tax revenue eased as well. Job growth appears to be stabilizing for Texas, with gains seen for the last eight consecutive months. Also, the rig count continues to improve. As of the end of October, the Texas rig count had increased to 256 active rigs, well above the May 2016 low of 173," said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. "The recent oil production cuts announced by Kuwait and Oman suggest that the early days of the OPEC production agreement have been successful and will support higher crude oil prices. We expect Texas drilling activity to continue to gradually improve through early 2017, contributing to a strengthening state economy."
The Texas Economic Activity Index consists of eight variables, as follows: nonfarm payrolls, exports, hotel occupancy rates, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, housing starts, sales tax revenues, home prices, and the Baker Hughes rotary rig count. 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 is a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated (NYSE: CMA), the largest U.S. commercial bank headquartered in Texas, strategically aligned by three business segments: The Business Bank, The Retail Bank, and Wealth Management. Comerica focuses on relationships, and helping people and businesses be successful. In addition to a local banking center network throughout Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Austin, San Antonio and Kerrville, Texas, Comerica Bank locations can be found in Arizona, California, Florida and Michigan, with select businesses operating in several other states, as well as in Canada and Mexico.
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SOURCE Comerica Bank