Regional Economic Index Remains Positive

For the sixth straight month, the Creighton University Rural Mainstreet Index – or RMI – climbed above growth neutral.

The overall index for May jumped to a record high of 78.8 from April’s very healthy 69.0.

The index ranges between 0 and 100 with a reading of 50.0 representing growth neutral.

For an eighth straight month, the farmland price index advanced above growth neutral.

The May farm equipment-sales index rose to 67.9, its highest level since 2013.

The new hiring index climbed to 72.7 from 62.5 in April.

The confidence index, which reflects bank CEO expectations for the economy six months out, expanded to a very strong 78.8 from April’s 72.4.

For Kansas, the RMI for May expanded to 83.8 from 72.2 in April.

The new-hiring index for Kansas rose to 76.2 from 65.1 in April.

The survey represents an early snapshot of the economy of rural agriculturally and energy-dependent portions of the nation.