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MICHIGAN ECONOMY DIPPED IN APRIL DESPITE BETTER CAR SALES

 DETROIT, May 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite better auto and truck sales in April, the Michigan Business Activity Index compiled by Comerica Bank fell 5 points to 136 from a level of 141 in March. April's index was 4.5 percent above year-ago levels, and on a year-to-date basis for the first third of 1993, Michigan's economy is 5.6 percent stronger than 1992.
 "After eliminating the effects of inflation, Michigan's economy is running at a considerably faster pace than the national economy," said David L. Littmann, first vice president and senior economist at Comerica Bank in Detroit. "The nation's real gross domestic product advanced 3 percent, versus 6 percent for Michigan on a first quarter comparison, 1992-93.
 "Similarly, for the first third of 1993, Michigan's 5.6 percent advance outpaces the national gain in industrial production activity by 37 percent (5.6 percent vs 4.1 percent). It is this growth premium in Michigan that lowered April's state unemployment rate to 6.8 percent from 9.4 percent in April 1992. The U.S. unemployment rate is currently 7.0 percent," Littmann said.
 Littmann noted that in April, most components of the Michigan Business Activity Index were stable, but the financial sector experienced a four point loss, accounting for 80 percent of the index slippage. "Slightly above-average precipitation in April may have contributed to slower non-auto retailing and therefore a decline in the volume of financial transactions for the month."
 The Michigan Business Activity Index represents 10 different measures of Michigan economic activity compiled monthly by the Economics Department of Comerica Bank. The Index is seasonally adjusted, corrected for inflation and expressed on an index basis with base year 1982 equals 100. It has been calculated monthly since 1957 and depicts state economic activity over seven full swings of the U.S. business cycle.
 -0- 5/27/93
 /CONTACT: David L. Littmann, first vice president and senior economist, Comerica Bank, 313-222-7241/
 (CMA)


CO: Comerica Bank ST: Michigan IN: FIN SU: ECO

JG -- DE042 -- 3113 05/27/93 16:32 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 27, 1993
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