May 7, 2012 Economic stop lights for May still mostly green, but …
The economic picture for Utah still looks like continued growth ahead, but it appears that that growth rate is moderating a bit.
1) Employment growth rate slowed down after September, then improved a bit in March.
2) After a 5% year over year jump in the third quarter, Utah average wages fell 2.5% in the 4th quarter.
3) Unemployment claims seemed to have stopped declining.
4) Business equipment and software spending drifting downward.
5) U.S. leading indicators are slowing down too.
On the plus side:
1) Utah nonresidential construction values permitted were up almost 59% from December through February.
2) Utah construction employment is up 5%.
3) Statewide sales tax growth for the last 3 months is up almost 6% (we’re only 10% below peak growth in May 2007).
We may be in for a pause before growth picks back up in the summer.