Startup firm creation is one of the statistics that can be gleaned from Business Dynamics Statistics that were released by the Census on September 20. The net job creation rate for Arizona in 2015 was 3.1% while it was 2.5% for the U.S. States surrounding Arizona also did better than the nation, with California having 3.9%, Nevada 3.6%, Utah 5.1%, New Mexico 4.0% and Texas 3.3%.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis released the 2016 GDP by Metropolitan Area on September 20. Real GDP grew at a rate of 1.7% for metropolitan areas combined. Phoenix and Yuma had the most growth of Arizona metros at 2.6% for both. Sierra Vista-Douglas had positive growth for the first time in over four years with 0.3%. Statistics for 2001-2015 were revised with this release. Percent change in real GDP for Arizona metros: Flagstaff 1.9%, Lake Havasu City-Kingman 2.1%, Phoenix 2.6%, Prescott 3.5%, Sierra Vista 0.3%, Tucson 0.2%, and Yuma 2.6%.
The 2016 American Community Survey (ACS) one-year estimates were released on September 14. Did you know that Arizona households have a higher percent of computers than the nation? Over 90% of household in Arizona have one or more types of computing (this includes desktop or laptop computers, smartphones, and tablets). Other data for Arizona indicate that the median household income increased to $53,558, that 90.0% of Arizonans have health insurance coverage (either private or public), and the poverty rate decreased. The one-year ACS provides a multitude of data on the U.S., states and local areas 65,000 or more, while data on all areas will be released in December with the five-year estimates.
Arizona job growth was 1.3% over the year in August. This was the first time in a while that Arizona growth was below the U.S. (at 1.5%). Arizona’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 5.0% according to the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity September 14 release. Leisure and hospitality was once again the sector with the most year over year growth, followed by education and health services. Information and other services both decreased employment. August employment gains for Arizona metros in order of increase: Phoenix 1.8%, Yuma 1.7%, Lake Havasu City-Kingman 1.4%, Prescott 1.3%, Flagstaff 0.9%, Tucson 0.4%, and Sierra Vista -1.5%.
The Consumer Price Index increased 0.4% in August, seasonally adjusted. Once again, gasoline prices were the main factor in overall price changes with gasoline and shelter both going up. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.2%. The annual inflation rate, according to the September 14 release, was 1.9%.
Producer prices rose 0.2% in August on a seasonally adjusted basis according to the September 13 Bureau of Labor Statistics release. Final demand goods rose 0.5% and were the primary reason for the increase in final demand index for the month. Final demand services were up just 0.1%. Producer prices were up 2.4% over the year.