DALLAS, July 27, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Michigan Economic Activity Index was down 0.6 percentage points in May to a level of 128.3. May's reading is 54 points, or 73 percent, above the index cyclical low of 74.0. The index averaged 123.7 points for all of 2015, five and four-fifths points above the index average for 2014. April's index reading was 128.9.
"Our Michigan Economic Activity Index dipped in May after increasing in April. Only two out of eight index components increased for the month. They were initial claims for unemployment insurance (inverted) and the house price index. Auto production, state exports, housing starts, sales tax and hotel occupancy all eased. The push to the Michigan economy from the post-recession rebound in the auto industry is dissipating. Also, the strong dollar and soft global demand are still headwinds for U.S. exports," said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. "We expect the Bank of Japan to take more steps to weaken the value of the yen relative to the dollar and the euro, which will help the Japanese auto industry globally at the expense of U.S. and European automakers."
The Michigan 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 auto production. All data are seasonally adjusted, 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 more than 200 banking centers in Michigan, is a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated (NYSE: CMA), a financial services company headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and 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 Michigan and Texas, Comerica Bank locations can be found in Arizona, California, and Florida, with select businesses operating in several other states, as well as in Canada and Mexico.