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Tracking economic progress for U.S. states

A map of the Philly Fed's coincident indicators for 2016-2017

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia computes for each U.S. state a coincident indicator that combines information about employment, unemployment, hours worked, and wages. (These are state-level labor market data that are released reasonably quickly.) This coincident indicator has a base of 100 in 1992; thus, the numbers indicate how well each state has performed since 1992. The map shows how well they have performed from December 2016 to December 2017. This means we have to be careful when interpreting these numbers. A state may show great improvements, which is something to celebrate; but it’s important to consider whether those improvements come from climbing out of a hole or from an economy already in great shape. The reverse applies as well: States whose coincident indexes have not grown as strongly may already be doing pretty well. In the end, it is always useful to look at the details of every economic indicator.

How this map was created: From GeoFRED, click on “Build New Map.” Open the cog wheel and the “Choose Data” menu and select “State” as region type and look for the “coincident index.”

Suggested by Christian Zimmermann.

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