U of I Flash Index climbs to 104.4 for January

February 5, 2018

U of I Flash Index climbs to 104.4 for January


The University of Illinois Flash Index measure of the Illinois economy remained in the same slow-growth range in January that it’s been in for more than a year. The January reading of 104.4 was three-tenths of a point higher than December, but within the 104.1 to 104.6 range that the index has occupied since September 2016.

A Flash Index reading above 100 indicates growth in the state’s economy. There was only one deviation from the 104.1 to 104.6 range during 2017, in October when the index dipped to 103.9. View the complete Flash Index archive.

“The national economy remained strong in January, although the fourth quarter GDP growth rate of 2.6 percent rate fell short of the 3 percent plus levels of the previous two quarters,” said economist J. Fred Giertz, who has compiled the monthly index for the university’s Institute of Government and Public Affairs since 1995. “The Illinois unemployment rate fell to 4.8 percent, a slight decline of one-tenth of a percentage point while the national rate was unchanged, and state individual income tax receipts, after adjustments for rate increases, were strong for the month.”

Individual income tax and corporate tax receipts (adjusted for rate changes) were up for the month while sales tax collections were down, Giertz said. As noted in December, federal tax changes may affect future state tax revenue because of the link between federal and state tax base.

The Flash Index is a weighted average of Illinois growth rates in corporate earnings, consumer spending and personal income. Tax receipts from corporate income, personal income and retail sales are adjusted for inflation before growth rates are calculated. The growth rate for each component is then calculated for the 12-month period using data through January 31, 2018.

Research Area: Fiscal and Economic Policy

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