The Texas economy saw continued expansion in December. Although job growth ticked down during the month, the Texas Business Outlook Surveys indicated improved conditions, and the energy sector, exports and housing market expanded as well. The Texas Leading Index also edged up and unemployment held steady. In 2016, Texas employment grew 1.6%, faster than 2015’s 1.3% increase but below the state’s long-term average of 2.1%.
The Texas Leading Index, a composite of eight indicators that tend to change direction before the overall economy does, sheds light on the future of the state’s economy. In December, its one-month net change was 1.09%, and its three-month net change was 0.68%.
The Dallas Fed’s Texas Business Outlook Surveys indicated improvement in current activity and company outlooks across the manufacturing, services and retail sectors in December.