There won’t be a report this month due to a delay in the release of the county employment data, which is a key component indicator of the Index. According to the New Hampshire Employment Security, January county employment data is scheduled to be released on March 15 due to the annual benchmarking activity. The county employment data usually becomes available within a month after the end of the report month.
In January, the Coos economy showed a glimpse of an accelerating recovery. The Coos Index advanced at the fastest pace on a year-over-year basis since the latest recession. A strong rebound in the hospitality sector continued to be an engine of economic recovery in the county’s economy. The estimated rooms and meals revenues kept expanding on a year-over-year basis. However, the rising gasoline prices could threaten the revitalizing tourism industry down the road. The average Saturday vehicle traffic counts were not reported by the New Hampshire Department of Transportation, perhaps due to the ongoing budget and personnel issues. The manufacturing sector contributed to the recovery as well. The industrial electricity sales remained strong. However, the recovery had yet to show signs of gaining traction. In particular, the labor market remained weak. While both indicators of the labor market – number of employed residents and the estimated total wages and salaries – stopped falling, there were no signs of a strong and sustained rebound either.
On the contrary, State recovery appeared to be well under way. The State Index advanced five months in a row on a year-over-year basis at an increasing pace. All available component indicators remained up from where they were a year ago. A strong rebound in the labor market largely accounts for the recovery. Both the number of employed residents and the estimated total wages and salaries were up from prior year. The manufacturing sector continued its expansion as well. So did the hospitality sector. The estimated rooms and meals revenues expanded two months in a row on a year-over-year basis.
The real estate market analysis can be found at the end of this report.
In January, the Coos economy showed signs of stabilization. Improvement was seen across the sectors including manufacturing, hospitality and even the labor market. Manufacturing activities soared, as tracked by industrial electricity sales. Persistent increases in the coming months could be seen as revitalizing manufacturing industry. Hospitality industry remained strong as rooms and meals revenues continued its upward trend since hitting the lowest point in 2008. Even the labor market exhibited signs of relief as the number of people who have a job inched up for the month. On a year-over-year basis, losses in employment have slowed steadily in recent months, an indication that a turn toward adding jobs could be imminent. Real estate market did not fare as well, as home sales plunged.