Comerica Bank's Arizona Index Improves

Robert A. Dye, Ph.D.


Daniel Sanabria

Arizona City Scottsdale

Comerica Bank's Arizona Economic Activity Index increased by 0.3 percent in September to a level of 115.8.

Comerica Bank’s Arizona Economic Activity Index increased by 0.3 percent in September to a level of 115.8. September’s index reading is 16 points, or 16 percent, above the index cyclical low of 99.5. The index averaged 112.8 points for all of 2018, 1.8 points above the average for 2017. August’s index reading was 115.4.

Comerica Bank’s Arizona Economic Activity Index improved again in September, now posting five consecutive monthly gains. Eight of the nine sub-index components were positive in September. They included nonfarm payrolls, unemployment insurance claims (inverted), house prices, industrial electricity demand, state total trade, hotel occupancy, state sales tax revenues and total enplanements. Housing starts was the only negative component for the month. Arizona continues to show signs of a solid economic expansion as strong migration into the state has helped to boost demand for goods and services and hiring amongst businesses. State employment was up by 2.5 percent in the 12 months ending in October, well above the U.S. average of 1.4 percent. However, growth in the Arizona economy is still dependent on healthy economies outside of the state. Neighboring regions are experiencing a slowing in economic activity. We expect the California economy to cool into 2020, reinforcing soft housing markets in some of the major metropolitan areas. This can have a dampening effect on mobility if California home sellers struggle to find buyers. Another border region, Mexico, has entered into a mild recession for the first time since 2009, with three consecutive quarters of declining GDP through 2019Q2. A cooler Mexican economy means less travel and dollars spent in Arizona.

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Arizona Index Historical Values Chart

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November 27, 2019
Robert A. Dye, Ph.D., Senior Vice President and Chief Economist at Comerica Bank

Robert A. Dye, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President and Chief Economist
Daniel Sanabria, Senior Economist at Comerica Bank

Daniel Sanabria

Senior Economist