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Flash Index: Illinois’ slow recovery stalled in November

Tuesday, Dec 1, 2020

* From the Institute of Government and Public Affairs

The University of Illinois Flash Index was slowly recovering after it had dropped steeply at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, but that progress stalled last month. The index remained at 95.6 in November — the same reading as October.

“November was a month of contrasts, with rising rates of COVID-19 infections accompanied by positive news about the likely early availability of a vaccine. It also appears the country has avoided a presidential election impasse,” said University of Illinois economist J. Fred Giertz, who compiles the monthly index for the University of Illinois System’s Institute of Government and Public Affairs. “This helps to explain the contrast between the equity markets experiencing the strongest month in over 30 years and the real economy showing little progress.”

Equity markets are forward-looking and incorporate the likely future benefits from the vaccine, while the Flash Index is based on current results that do not reflect these expectations, Giertz said. See the full Flash Index Archive.

The Illinois unemployment rate in October (latest available) provided positive news, falling from 10.4% the previous month to 6.8%. The Illinois rate fell slightly below the national rate. The November numbers are not likely to be as strong.

After adjusting for inflation, sales and income tax receipts were down slightly from the same month last year. Corporate tax receipts were significantly lower because of one-time, extremely large collections in November 2019.

The Flash Index is normally a weighted average of Illinois growth rates in corporate earnings, consumer spending and personal income as estimated from receipts for corporate income, individual income, and retail sales taxes. These are adjusted for inflation before growth rates are calculated. The growth rate for each component is then calculated for the 12-month period using data through November 30, 2020. Ad hoc adjustments have been made to deal with the timing of the tax receipts resulting from state and Federal changes in payment dates beginning in March.

* The accompanying graph

Oof.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

8 Comments
  1. - Quibbler - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 1:33 pm:

    The failure to convene the legislature to pass an adequate relief package, with rent/mortgage assistance and help for small businesses, is taking its toll. Austerity kills.


  2. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 1:36 pm:

    This is the world the GOP wants, unrestrained Covid-19 spread (”community immunity” in the words of Rand Paul). Until we beat back the virus, the economy will not recover.


  3. - Dotnonymous - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 1:45 pm:

    1.resolve Covid 19 pandemic

    2. economic recovery

    3. start at number 1.


  4. - True Believer - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 1:47 pm:

    - Precinct Captain -

    You are right. The GOP has been controlling Illinois for way too long. If only the Democrats were in charge .


  5. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 2:27 pm:

    ===The failure to convene the legislature to pass an adequate relief package===

    With what money, pray tell?


  6. - BeenThereDoneThat - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 2:33 pm:

    Thank you True Believer. My goodness.


  7. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 2:45 pm:

    True Believer - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 1:47 pm:

    Comprehension isn’t your strong suit I see. Here’s just one example. Sue Rezin, who is currently running all over screaming about the LaSalle Veterans Home, put out a press release in August attacking mitigation measures against Covid-19. Specifically, she attacked mitigations on bars and restaurants, the biggest spreader sites. Now, through community spread, people brought Covid-19 into the facility where it is running rampant.

    Here’s another example. The same Sue Rezin complained the legislature is cut out of decision making. They created a bicameral committee for input. Maybe she should know this? After all, she was there when the vote happened.

    A third example, from Rezin’s call for input, was again attacking mitigation measures and data. These are all publicly available on the IDPH and DCEO websites.

    Simply put, Sue Rezin, as just one Republican example, has said the priority should not be containing the virus, but opening businesses. That’s the wrong way to support businesses and the wrong way to fight the virus. Public health professionals around the world say so. She’s the one supporting a misguided herd immunity strategy, not Democrats.


  8. - Bubble Popper - Tuesday, Dec 1, 20 @ 4:00 pm:

    == With what money, pray tell? ==

    I wish folks would move off the manifestly absurd position that the supermajority Democratic trifecta government has already tapped 100% of all available revenue streams, and just admit that they’re ultimately okay with all the deaths and the cratering economy. It would make for a more honest discussion.


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