CCI drops again in April but economy still grows

SOUTH KINGSTOWN – In a second consecutive monthly decline, the current-conditions index compiled by University of Rhode Island economist Leonard Lardaro fell another eight points to 67 in April.

The CCI measures 12 economic indicators representative of the economic climate of the state. A value above 50 implies economic expansion, while a value less than 50 indicates contraction.

He noted rises in both the labor force – which reached its highest level since March 2016 – and employment – which reached its highest zenith since late 2008.

In addition, Lardaro believes a continued downward trend of benefit exhaustions, stretching back to July 2017, is promising.

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April saw eight of the CCI’s 12 measured indicators show improvement, whereas nine improved in the March CCI and 11 rose in the February report.

The largest April increase came in single-unit permits, which grew by 22.3 percent, reflective of new-home construction.