South Dakota economy reverses, grows in October

South Dakota’s economy showed strong growth in October — especially in jobs growth.

Creighton University’s Mid-America Business Conditions Index shows South Dakota’s index was up to 52.6. In September, the state’s index was 47.8.

Anything above 50 indicates economic expansion; anything below 50 indicates economic contraction.

Jobs in South Dakota’s manufacturing sector grew by 3.6% in October — the best in the nine-state region.

Doctor Ernie Goss, who oversees the index, said, “Based on recent surveys of manufacturers in South Dakota, I expect job growth to slow, but remain positive, and hourly wage growth to continue at its current solid pace through the first quarter of 2020.”

Regionwide, he said, “The Mid-America economy needs qualified and available workers, pure and simple. The global economy is in an economic slowdown in certain parts of the globe. In this part of the country, and the U.S., we’re seeing continued expansion and very low unemployment rates, so that’s one thing we need.”

He also said that, long-term, the region needs the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement to be ratified.

“We’re seeing political haggling going on and that’s not good,” said Goss, “and certainly not good for this part of the country — particularly those businesses that are tied to agriculture, where this is going to be very good for agriculture. We need to see that passed and signed by the President.”

The entire nine-state region — including both Dakotas, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma — returned to economic growth in October.

But Goss says six-month confidence remains weak because of trade uncertainty. “I expect business confidence to depend heavily on trade talks with China, and the passage of the nation’s trade agreement with Canada and Mexico,” he said.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News