DALLAS, Aug. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Arizona Economic Activity Index rose 1.1 percentage points in June, increasing to a level of 86.3. The June reading is 15 points, or 22 percent, above the index cyclical low of 71.0. Year-to-date the index has averaged 84 points, six points above the average for all of 2011.
"Following a 0.3 percentage point dip in May, the Arizona Economic Activity Index gained 1.1 points in June, reaching the highest index level since November 2008. Job growth in Arizona is outpacing that of the nation, and Phoenix home prices have risen every month since October 2011," said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. "The recovery in local housing markets is providing broadening support for the Arizona economy. However, significant downside risk factors for U.S. housing markets remain in play for at least the next six months."
The Arizona Economic Activity Index consists of seven variables, as follows: nonfarm payrolls, exports, sales tax revenues, hotel occupancy rates, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, building permits, and the Case-Shiller home price index. 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 (NYSE: CMA) operates 18 full-service banking centers throughout the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. In addition to Arizona, Comerica locations can be found in its headquarters state of Texas, as well as in California, Florida and Michigan, with select businesses operating in several other states, as well as in Canada and Mexico. To find Comerica on Facebook, please visit www.facebook.com/ComericaCares. Follow Comerica Chief Economist Robert Dye on Twitter at @Comerica_Econ.