World Business Chicago tracks indicators from month to month to gauge the strength of several aspects of Chicago’s regional economy, including employment in major sectors, residential and office real estate data, price and purchasing indexes, and auto and truck sales. As some data is released with a two-month lag, the information summarized below reflects July 2010.
Key trends evident in this month’s “By The Numbers” include:
- The Chicago Midwest Manufacturing Index, a monthly index tracking manufacturing activity, rose to 81.4 in July from 79.6 in June; the July 2010 value is a point higher than it was in July 2009.
- Midwest housing starts increased to 93,000 in July, from 84,000 in June.
- The unemployment rate decreased to 10.5 in July from 10.6 in June.
- Regional employment increased in July, for the manufacturing, information, and financial sectors; however total regional employment decreased to 4,219,300 in July from 4,266,500 in June.
- The national Consumer Confidence Index fell to 51.0 in July from 54.3 in June; however the June 2010 figure is still higher than July 2009 when the index was at 47.4.
These and other trends are illustrated in this month's Chicago By The Numbers table (PDF).