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July's Leading Index Suggests Growing Economic Momentum

IU Kelley School of Business

New analysis from Indiana University suggests the Hoosier economy is heading in the right direction.

The Leading Index for Indiana – which uses national-level economic data to make predictions about the state’s economy – rose slightly in July. That’s the second monthly increase in a row.

According to Timothy Slaper at the IU Kelley School of Business, the increase comes in part because of a jump in homebuilder sentiment, what he calls the “exhuberant stock market,” and a strong outlook in transportation and logistics.

Automotive sales were a particularly bright spot, hitting highs that haven’t been seen since 2005.

Still, it’s not all good news. Manufacturing took a hit, and consumer sentiment remains below average.

Taken together, the indicators suggest the Hoosier economy is headed in the right direction, but Slaper says actual economic growth could be weak in the second half of the year, as many of the other indicators in the Index were flat or negative.