Midwest Economic Survey Finds Recession Looms Late This Year Or Early In 2024

Omaha, Nebraska — The Midwestern economy is headed toward recession — soon, according to the latest projection from Creighton University and its monthly survey of business leaders in Iowa and eight other states.

Creighton economist Ernie Goss says the overall Business Conditions Index rose slightly for the region into the positive growth category, but Iowa’s economy is still showing negative growth.

The hiring trends for the Midwest during September were “not good,” Goss says, though the figures were up slightly from August.

The Midwest’s regional manufacturing economy has weakened from earlier in the year, Goss says, and it’s weakened from the same period last year, while inflation remains troublesome.

According to U.S. International Trade Association data, Iowa’s manufacturing exports expanded from just over nine billion dollars for the first seven months of 2022 to ten billion for the same period in 2023. That’s a growth rate of better than nine percent. For the first seven months of each year, the state’s leading manufacturing export, machinery, soared by almost 24 percent between 2022 to 2023. On the zero-to-100 scale where 50 is growth neutral, Goss says Iowa’s Business Conditions Index for September rose to a weak 48.5, up slightly from 47.9 in August.



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