Leonard Lardaro, a URI Professor of Economics and the creator of the Current Conditions Index (CCI), is eagerly awaiting revised labor market data to provide a fuller picture of Rhode Island’s economic progress. In December, he noted that the state’s economy held relatively steady, with a December CCI of 58. However, some key indicators showed improvement, including Government Employment, Private Service-Producing Employment, Total Manufacturing Hours, Manufacturing Wage and Labor Force participation.
Lardaro’s concern lies in the weak improvement of Retail Sales, which was up only .02 percent. Additionally, he is concerned about the looming end of federal stimulus money and its potential impact on balancing the state budget and leading to an economic slowdown. Despite these concerns, the CCI remains in an expansion value.
Lardaro is available for broadcast and print interviews and will be blogging about the new labor data during the coming weeks. Additional information and historical data can be found online at http://www.llardaro.com/current.htm. Individuals can contact him at his office at 401-874-4128 or his home at 401-783-9563 for more information. Dawn Bergantino from the URI Department of Communications and Marketing can also be reached at 401-874-4147 for further details.