PROVIDENCE, RI – University of Rhode Island Professor of Economics Leonard Lardaro has released his monthly report on the state's economy. Lardaro says the July numbers show both good news and bad news.
"What a bizarre situation Rhode Island finds itself in the acceleration in activity that everyone here had been so eagerly awaiting has already occurred and is in the process of disappearing!" Those are the words used by Professor Lardaro in summarizing the start of the third quarter.
His data shows the economy accelerated at the end of 2011 and continued into the mid-point of this year . But the state's economy has now shifted into lower gear. Retail sales fell in July the first decline since last August. On the other hand manufacturing wages are reported to be increasing.
Lardaro believes the level of employment in Rhode Island is actually higher than the official state numbers, but the rate of growth has, in his words "slowed to almost a crawl."
Professor Lardaro reports that manufacturing in Rhode Island may benefit from recent actions by the Federal Reserve as well as the European Central Bank, but there is usually a long lag in improvements to manufacturing in similar circumstances. At this complex juncture, Lardaro urges state leaders to take positive action.
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