Data Digest Reports Southeast Economy Continues to Improve

December 12, 2012

Image depicting job gainsThe Southeast economy continued to strengthen gradually in October, according to the latest Data Digest. The monthly report is produced by the Atlanta Fed's Regional Economic Information Network (REIN).

While regional economic activity has shown positive momentum, it still lags the U.S. recovery in some southeastern states, the report said. Labor market trends were similarly mixed throughout the region, with most states experiencing continued, albeit slow, gains in total employment. Jobless rates have declined from last year's levels for much of the region, although in most states they remain above the U.S. average of 7.9 percent.

The Data Digest also highlighted slight improvements in the region's housing market. According to the Atlanta Fed's Construction and Real Estate Survey, the majority of brokers reported that sales were ahead of year-earlier levels in October. Regional homebuilders also reported a rebound in sales growth. Both groups noted a continued decline in inventories, year-over-year price increases, and a pickup in buyer traffic. The outlook for sales in coming months is positive among brokers and builders, said the report.

To learn more about the Southeast economy, see the full report.