State economic growth slows in September as oil, grain prices fall

New data shows cheap oil and grain trimmed economic gains in Kansas and Missouri, among others.

The monthly regional economic report, compiled by Creighton University, shows the Business Conditions Index for Missouri dipped to 57.1 from 57.7 in September and 59.2 in August. Average weekly wages in Missouri for the year ending in August sank by 1.3 percent, the lowest in the region.

Amid slow economic conditions, the survey also highlighted a healthy expansion in the manufacturing sector, especially vehicle producers and consumable goods manufacturers, except food processors.

The study covers nine Midwestern states. Overall, the index fell to 51.8 in October from 54.3 in September, a sharp decline from 57.2 in August.

Creighton University economist Ernie Goss, who oversees the survey, said the dip in the overall index was fueled by falling grain and oil prices, which mostly affected the rural areas. He said the index points to a positive, but slower growth in the month ahead.

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 economic growth, while a score below that suggests decline.

Read more from the Kansas City Star

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