URI economist says state economy appears unable to maintain momentum

Media Contact: Dawn Bergantino, 401-874-4147 |

WHAT: The November Current Conditions Index (CCI) fell to 67 from its October value of 83, which tied as a previous high point for the year. While November’s overall CCI was disappointing and failed to beat its year-earlier value, 8 of 12 CCI indicators – including Unemployment, Retail Sales, Manufacturing Wage and Employment Service Jobs – did show improvement. However, Rhode Island’s Total Manufacturing Hours, a proxy for manufacturing output, fell 7.6 percent – its 14th consecutive decline – and Single-Unit Permits, a measure of new home construction, fell by 18.1 percent. Overall, the Rhode Island economy appears to be experiencing difficulty sustaining its recent momentum.

WHO: URI Professor of Economics Leonard Lardaro, creator and author of the Current Conditions Index.

WHEN: Embargoed until Monday, Jan. 13 at 12:05 a.m.

HOW: Use attached information, including summary and charts prepared by Lardaro for news reports. He is available for broadcast and print interviews. Lardaro will be blogging about the new labor data during the coming weeks. You can find his discussion and charts at http://rieconomy.blogspot.com. Additional information and historical data available online: http://www.llardaro.com/current.htm.

FOR INFORMATION: Leonard Lardaro, office, 401-874-4128, home, 401-783-9563.

Dawn Bergantino, URI Department of Communications and Marketing, 401-874-4147.

BACKGROUND: The Current Conditions Index, created by Lardaro, measures the strength of the present economic climate in Rhode Island by following the behavior of 12 indicators.