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Illinois flash index of economy remains unchanged from last month


J. Fred Giertz, Institute of Government and Public Affairs
(217) 244-4822
Mark Reutter, Business Editor
(217) 333-0568

8/4/2003

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 stood unchanged at 96.7 last month from its June level.

While the last three months have shown some improvement, the Illinois economy still seems mired in the same no-growth that has characterized the last 26 months.

"July’s results are disappointing given the spate of good economic news that has emerged recently," said J. Fred Giertz, the Illinois economist who released the Flash reading.

"For example, the 2001 recession was officially declared to have ended in November 2001 by the National Bureau of Economic Research. The GDP growth level was revised upward for the second quarter, exceeding most predictions. Most forecasters are now predicting strong growth for the last half of 2003. Nevertheless, the Flash Index is yet to register this good news for Illinois."

Adjusted for administrative changes taking effect in the new fiscal year, all three components of the Flash were virtually unchanged in real terms from July of last year.

The 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 July 31.


line chart showing July Flash Index holding near steady