DALLAS, Nov. 30, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Michigan Economic Activity Index fell in September, down 0.9 percentage points to a level of 128.1. September's reading is 54 points, or 73 percent, above the index cyclical low of 74.1. The index averaged 123.6 points for all of 2015, five and four-fifths points above the index average for 2014. August's index reading was 129.0.
"The Comerica Bank Michigan Economic Activity Index declined in September, for the third consecutive month. A reset in housing starts in late summer, after surging earlier in the year, was a persistent weight on the Michigan Index through the third quarter. In September only three out of eight index components were positive. They were nonfarm payrolls, state exports and hotel occupancy. Claims for unemployment insurance (inverted), housing starts, house prices, auto production and state sales tax revenues all declined for the month. We look for only modest momentum in the Michigan economy through early next year as auto production starts to ease in the state," said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. "Most major auto makers expect slight declines in U.S. auto sales through 2017, and small car production is being shifted out of the state, so manufacturing employment is expected to be a drag on the state economy next year."
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 one of the largest banking center networks 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.