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Indiana Business Bulletin

For the week of October 24, 2016   


COMMENTARY – by Michael J. Hicks, PhD
How Economists Think About Growth

It all boils down to technology, productivity total & quality and labor total & quality.

The slow growth that has gripped the nation since the Great Recession remains our biggest economic problem. But, to fully understand the issue it is helpful to think about growth the way economists do. This is radically different than how it is typically portrayed in the media. The typical newspaper or TV description of economic growth reads like an accounting ledger. So, measurements of consumer spending, business confidence or stock prices dominate the media reports. These things are to economic growth as the sniffles are to a cold. They are symptoms which might be treated, but are not causes of economic growth, or the lack thereof.

Read the full text: How Economists Think About Growth

Last week's commentary: The Effect of a Trade War

Save the Date: December 5th Outlook Breakfast

The annual Indiana Economic Outlook event will be Monday, December 5th, 2016. This year's event will include a breakfast, the 2017 economic forecast, and a keynote presentation by US Senator Donnelly. Look for more details in the coming weeks!

Archive of past Outlook events in Muncie:

Indiana Economic Outlook and Business Roundtable updates on Facebook:

Projects and Publications Library

View our latest work and related topics by visiting our projects and publications library.

Projects and Publications Library:

DID YOU KNOW? – by Dagney Faulk, PhD
September Housing

US housing starts decreased in September driven by fewer starts in the multifamily housing segment. Housing starts are the number of new residential construction projects beginning in any particular month.

Total housing starts came in a 1,047,000 (seasonally adjusted), an 8.96 percent decrease from August and a 11.94 percent year-over-year decrease. Large (5+) multifamily units decreased 39 percent from August and 42 percent from a year ago. Single family structures increased 8.15 percent from August and 5.38 perecent from a year ago likely drive by lack of inventory in existing home sales.

Details on US housing starts:

View more details, including other housing indicators:

ECONOMIC INDICATORSView all economic indicators (CBER Data Center).

National Data

View the complete list of economic indicators and their release dates.


Indiana Data

County Data

MSA (Metro Area) Data



This Week's Data Releases

October 27, 2016

U.S. Durable Good Orders, Monthly

October 28, 2016

U.S. Gross Domestic Product, Quarterly

BallStateCBER page

BallStateCBER account




Center for Business and Economic Research
2000 W. University Ave. (WB 149),  Muncie, IN 47306-0360
Phone: 765-285-5926 | Email: | Web:

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