A survey of the Midwest economy indicated continued growth in June but, for the second straight month, at a slower pace, with international trade and inflation pressures declining.
The Midwest Business Conditions Index, based on a survey of purchasing managers in nine states, was 57.2 on a 100-point scale, with scores over 50 indicating economic growth. The index was 60 in April and 57.6 in May.
Creighton University economist Ernie Goss, who oversees the monthly survey, said demand for U.S. exports has slowed because of global economic problems and because a stronger dollar makes U.S. goods less competitively priced.
Continued reduction of exports would be "a significant problem if this trend continues," he said. "On the other hand, the stronger dollar and somewhat slower regional growth have pushed import growth lower. I expect weak trade numbers in the months ahead for the nine-state region."
The survey's trade index was 48.4 in June, down from 55.