Report: Loss of manufacturing jobs leads to index drop

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A new monthly report shows that a loss of manufacturing jobs combined with other factors to slow growth in the regional economy of nine Midwest and Plains states.

The overall index in January for Creighton University’s Mid-America Business Conditions survey released Tuesday fell to 56.2 from December’s 64.6. Any score above 50 on the survey’s indexes suggests growth.

Creighton economist Ernie Goss, who oversees the monthly survey of business leaders, pointed to a loss of manufacturing jobs. The survey’s business confidence index, which looks ahead six months, plummeted to 36.2 — the lowest reading since the beginning of the pandemic.

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