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Drought among drains on Midwest economy

Published 9:44am Tuesday, September 4, 2012

OMAHA, Neb. — A monthly survey suggests that the continuing drought and lessening export demand for U.S. products are among the drains on the economy in nine Midwest and Plains.

A report released Tuesday says August’s Mid-America Business Conditions Index remained below growth neutral for a second month. It rose to 49.7 from 48.7 in July. June’s figure was 57.2.

The survey of business leaders and supply managers uses a collection of indexes ranging from zero to 100. Any score above 50 suggests growth while a score below 50 suggests decline for that factor.

Creighton University economist Ernie Goss oversees the survey, and he says supply managers remain pessimistic about future economic conditions.

The survey covers Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota.

 

Crews battle wildfire in Boundary Waters because of dry conditions

Ground crews are battling another wildfire in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness northwest of Ely.

The Cummings Lake fire covers an estimated 20 acres. The area is filled with black spruce in a lowland area about 12 miles northwest of Ely.

The fire was reported Sunday afternoon. Crews continued firefighting efforts Monday.

Superior National Forest spokeswoman Becca Manlove says no structures are immediately threatened.

There are currently no official closures in the Boundary Waters, although officials don’t recommend camping on Otter Lake.

The Pagami Creek fire last year burned about 145 square miles inside and outside the BWCA.

The area has more than 2,100 campsites scattered across 1,700 square miles of wilderness.