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Carolinas Survey of Business Activity

May 24, 2018

Firms in the Carolinas Saw Continued Growth in May

Overview

The Carolinas economic expansion continued in May, according to the latest survey results from the Richmond Fed. Firms reported improved business conditions and higher sales as indexes for both rose to 22, from 18 and 17, respectively. Corresponding expectations metrics show that an even greater share of firms expect conditions and sales to improve further in the next six months.

While survey results suggest that firms' expenditures were up, on balance, the indexes reflecting capital and services spending decreased in April. Meanwhile, the employment and wages metrics suggest continued growth in the Carolinas, but results indicate that worker shortages persisted. Many firms expect these trends to continue in the coming months.

Firms reported that input prices increased at a faster pace, on average, but growth of prices received slowed for the second consecutive month. Firms expect growth of prices paid to continue outpacing that of prices received, but also anticipate that the gap between the two will narrow in the coming months.

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Regional Survey Team (804) 697-8702