Midwest economic index reaches a 3-year high

Published 11:57 am Thursday, May 1, 2014

OMAHA — A monthly economic index for nine Midwestern and Plains states hit a three-year high in April, suggesting more economic growth over the next three to six months.

A report issued Thursday says the overall Mid-America Business Conditions Index rose to 60.4 from 58.2 in March.

Looking six months ahead, the business confidence portion of the overall index jumped to 64.2 in April from 59.0 in March.

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The survey results from supply managers are compiled into a collection of indexes ranging from zero to 100. Survey organizers say any score above 50 suggests growth, while a score below that suggests decline.

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

Pete Haddeland, CEO of the First National Bank in Mahnomen, said, “Farmland rent prices have peaked and are slowly starting to fall.”  Brian Nicklason, CEO of Woodland Bank in Grand Rapids registered concern about the late spring and its impact on tourism and the resort industry.