Nebraska Leading Economic Indicator Rises Modestly

Nebraska Leading Economic Indicator Rises Modestly
Courtesy/Dr. Eric Thompson, Economist and Director of the UNL Bureau of Business Research.
November 29th, 2023 | University of Nebraska Bureau of Business Research

Slow Economic Growth Expected in First Half of 2024

Nebraska’s Leading Economic Indicator rose in October, according to the most recent report from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Designed to predict economic activity six months into the future, the Leading Economic Indicator increased by 0.30%.

“The modest increase in the leading indicator suggests that economic growth will continue through the first half of 2024, but that growth will be slow,” said economist Eric Thompson, director of the Bureau of Business Research, department chair and K.H. Nelson College Professor of Economics.

The six components of Nebraska’s Leading Economic Indicator include business expectations, building permits for single-family homes, airline passenger counts, initial claims for unemployment insurance, the value of the U.S. dollar and manufacturing hours worked.

Two of six indicator components improved significantly during October.

Building permits for single-family homes increased during the month.

“The October increase, however, may reflect a rebound from low levels rather than the beginning of sustained growth,” said Thompson. The number of building permits dropped in Nebraska during three of the previous four months.

Business expectations also were positive in Nebraska during October.

“Nebraska businesses reported plans to increase employment over the next six months,” said Thompson.

The full report and a technical report describing the indicators are available at the Bureau of Business Research website,


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