Omaha, Nebraska — The nine-state Mid-American region, which includes Iowa, is seeing its economic numbers fall for a fourth straight month, according to a Creighton University survey of supply managers and business leaders.
Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says the report shows the region lost a significant number of manufacturing jobs during November.
Data from the U-S Bureau of Labor Statistics shows Iowa lost 13-hundred manufacturing jobs over the past year. Goss says the past several surveys indicate that trend will continue into the first quarter of 2016.
The strong U-S dollar and global economic weakness are having a significant, negative impact on manufacturers — and businesses linked to manufacturing — across the region. Goss says that weakness has been showing up in the surveys over the past four months, but has yet to spill over into the broader regional economy.
As far as confidence, the survey finds economic optimism sank when looking ahead six months. Falling agriculture and energy commodity prices, along with global economic uncertainty, pushed supply managers’ expectations of future economic conditions lower for the month. Over the past 12 months, Goss says farm commodity prices dropped nearly 14-percent while energy commodity prices plunged almost 23-percent.