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June flash index indicates state may be climbing out of economic slump

Mark Reutter, Business Editor
(217) 333-0568

7/1/2003

EDITORS, NEWS DIRECTORS: The Flash Index of Economic Growth, produced by economists at the University of Illinois, is based on the most up-to-date information on the Illinois economy.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The University of Illinois Flash Economic Index indicates that the state may be climbing out of its prolonged slump.

The June reading of 96.7 – combined with May’s reading of 96.8 – represents the highest level of state economic activity since February 2002, but also suggests no burst of business investment or consumer spending following the end of the Iraqi war.

The last 16 months have been marked by an extremely slow and uncertain recovery from the recession in 2001.

"While avoiding a double-dip recession, neither the United States nor the Illinois economies have yet to experience a real breakout from the malaise that has followed the 2001 slump," said J. Fred Giertz, the Illinois economist who released the June reading today.

The Flash Index is still below the 100 dividing line between economic growth and contraction. The corporate profits component of the Index was up slightly in June, individual income taxes were slightly lower, and sales taxes were virtually unchanged compared with sales taxes in June a year ago.

The Flash Index is a weighted average of Illinois growth rates in corporate earnings, consumer spending and personal income. Tax receipts from corporate income, personal income and retail sales are adjusted for inflation before growth rates are calculated. The growth rate for each component is then calculated for the 12-month period using data through June 30.

line chart showing June Flash Index holding near steady