DALLAS, Jan. 3, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Comerica Bank's Texas Economic Activity Index increased by 0.1 points in October to 135.8. October's index reading is 40 points, or 42 percent, above the index cyclical low of 95.5. The index averaged 128.5 points for all of 2017, 4.2 points above the average for 2016. September's index reading was 135.7.
The Comerica Bank Texas Economic Activity Index increased slightly in October, following a small increase in September. The two-month gain in our headline index for Texas reverses a slight two-month decline over July and August. In October, six out of nine sub-indexes were positive. They were non-farm payrolls, unemployment insurance claims (inverted), house prices, industrial electricity demand, state trade and sales tax revenue. The three negative sub-indexes were housing starts, rig count and hotel occupancy. Lower oil prices are weighing on oil producers' plans for 2019. The Texas state rig count dipped from August through October. We expect to see further declines in the rig count into early 2019. Oil producers are paring back planned expenditures for 2019 and some drillers have canceled orders for new rigs. Cooler oil field activity in early 2019 will be a moderate weight on the overall state economy. The potential for cooler U.S. and international economic growth in 2019 completes the triple threat to the Texas economy this year. The good news is that Texas is still attracting new business and new people from outside the state. The momentum in the non-energy part of the Texas economy, which is by far the biggest part of the state economy, is significant and will keep the overall state economy expanding through early 2019.
The Texas Economic Activity Index consists of nine variables, as follows: nonfarm payroll employment, continuing claims for unemployment insurance, housing starts, house price index, industrial electricity sales, Texas rotary rig count, total trade, hotel occupancy and sales tax revenue. All data are seasonally adjusted. Nominal values have been converted to constant dollar values. Total index levels are expressed in terms of three-month moving averages.
Comerica Bank is a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated (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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