The March Creighton University Mid-America Business Conditions Index rose to its highest level since August of last year signaling solid growth for the region over the next three to six months.
“The floods that the area’s experienced in March, that’s hit more of the agricultural sector,” said economist Ernie Goss. “We’re going to see some of those impacts. Almost one-fourth of supply managers reported negative impacts from the floods. Those impacts are likely to spread and we’ll see some of those in the months ahead.”
The Business Conditions Index, which ranges between 0 and 100, climbed to 58.2 from February’s 57.9. This is the 28th straight month the index has remained above growth neutral 50.0.
“Everything is in limbo,” said Goss. “The Chinese have begun playing the game like the Trump administration has and that is announcing, we don’t have to get an agreement here, we’re just as well off without an agreement. That’s the same language used by the Trump administration.”
The flooding in the Midwest will likely cost Kansans more at the grocery store.
One of the things we’re going to see probably is increases in the prices of food,” said Goss. “With the floods and some other factors, we’re going to see beef prices probably up with massive amounts of cattle that were drowned in the floods in Nebraska and Iowa. We also had fields underwater in both states.”
The impact of flooding is likely not over, with snowmelt still coming downstream from the Dakotas later in the season.