Area Economy

A look at local, regional, national and international trends.


Construction has varying impact on state economies

March 27, 2015
State economies are affected differently depending on the level of construction activity relative to their overall economic activity. Read More

Construction materials prices rise for first time in six months

March 20, 2015
The largest monthly gain in petroleum prices in more than three years caused construction materials prices to expand 0.4 percent in February, ending a six-month streak when prices failed to rise, according to the March 13 producer price index report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Read More

Notes of caution seeping into the economic forecast

March 13, 2015
The West Michigan economy continues on a path of modest growth, although there is a hint of caution in the air. Read More

Michigan companies experience a rebound in exports

March 6, 2015
According to the latest international trade numbers, worldwide merchandise exports edged down in December for the third month in a row to $1.4 trillion, adjusted for seasonal variation, a statistical process that smoothes out volatility in the monthly indicators for factors such as the number of days in a month and holidays. Read More

Attracting young talent is a state economic development priority

February 27, 2015
Conventional wisdom is that people follow jobs. Read More

Bring in people with updated skills to drive new business

February 20, 2015
Recent government statistics show a strong trend in employee hiring. Read More

Construction employment momentum should carry into 2015

February 13, 2015
The U.S. construction industry added 39,000 jobs in January, including 12,700 net new nonresidential jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary estimate released earlier this month. Read More

West Michigan’s economy continues modest growth trend

February 6, 2015
Modest growth continues. That’s the latest word on the West Michigan economy, according to data collected in the last two weeks of January. Read More

Michigan ranks among lowest states for export growth

January 30, 2015
According to the latest numbers on international trade released by the World Trade Organization, in the first 11 months of 2014 the value of world merchandise exports edged up 1.6 percent to $15.6 trillion from the same period in 2013. Read More

HR gets the most out of your biggest asset: employees

January 23, 2015
Human resources at one time had an image problem. Read More