Is there a way to find out the real status of the US rural economy? Ernie Goss, a professor of economics at Creighton University, says “ask the bankers.”
In an Associated Press story, Goss reveals a survey of bank presidents and chief executives from nine US states: Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, Wyoming, Illinois and North Dakota.
- Rural economies are improving, but a labor shortage is restraining growth.
- Retail sales remained weak in October, as large retailers in trade centers pulled customers from a wide area, the report said.
- The index for loan volume in the rural areas dropped significantly, to 58.8 from September’s 76.9.
- The home sales index in the nine states rose slightly from 35.5 in September to 36.4, the survey found.
- Bankers in all states except Kansas reported October job gains, but nearly 79 percent of bankers said a lack of labor is having a negative impact on rural business growth.
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