DALLAS, April 23, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Texas Economic Activity Index declined 0.4 percentage points in February to a level of 109.7. February's reading is 38 points, or 53 percent, above the index cyclical low of 71.6. The index averaged 105 points for all of 2013, three points above the average for full-year 2012. January's index reading was revised slightly down to 110.1.
"Our Texas Index dipped again in February, and just like it was in January, the culprit was volatility in residential buildings permits. Permits from November through February eased after spiking last October. Given the strong population and income growth of key Texas metropolitan areas, and overall solid economic performance of the state, I expect home builders to be very active this spring and summer," said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. "And just like last month, most other components of our Texas index were positive, including payroll job growth and the drilling rig count. We continue to see signs that the broader U.S. economy is thawing out after a winter freeze and this will benefit Texas as well."
The Texas 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 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 136 banking centers in Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Austin, San Antonio and Kerrville regions of 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. To find Comerica on Facebook, please visit www.facebook.com/ComericaCares.