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MELLON PSFS INDEX ADVANCES IN NOVEMBER

 MELLON PSFS INDEX ADVANCES IN NOVEMBER
 PITTSBURGH, Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mellon PSFS Index of


Economic Performance for the Philadelphia metro area, which gauges the overall economic health of the region, rose a solid 1.3 percent in November, the second consecutive monthly increase, it was announced today.
 This gain was led by a strong pickup in service-producing jobs, the third straight rise in this component following sharp losses during the spring and summer of 1991. A rise in the manufacturing work week and an increase in housing permits also contributed to the positive showing for the index in November. In addition, contract awards for commercial construction climbed for the second straight month, ending, at least temporarily, a downward slide dating back to late 1989. On the downside, goods-producing employment continued to fall, as it has for the past three years.
 Compared to a year ago, the Mellon PSFS Index is down by 11.5 percent reflecting weaker numbers for every component of the index except housing permits. Car sales, contract awards for commercial construction, and goods-producing employment have led the past year's decline.
 As far as the future is concerned, the recent improvement in service-producing jobs and the drop in interest rates provide some encouragement. In spite of weak manufacturing employment and low commercial building, the housing market and sales of big ticket consumer goods are expected to get a boost from the latest round of reductions in borrowing costs. Certainly by late spring or early summer, the economy should show clear signs of shaking off the recessionary conditions which have plagued the area for two years.
 The Mellon PSFS Index for the Philadelphia area stood at 104.5 in November, up from 103.1 in October.
 MELLON INDEX OF ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE -- PHILADELPHIA
 November
 (1980 equals 100)
 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991
 132.2 132.5 128.3 118.1 104.5
 -0- 1/14/92
 /CONTACT: Debra DeCourcy of Mellon Bank, 412-234-5873/ CO: Mellon PSFS ST: Pennsylvania IN: FIN SU:


CD -- PG006 -- 9389 01/14/92 09:03 EST
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Date:Jan 14, 1992
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