Survey: Valley business conditions continue to improve

craigschoolcraigschoolThe San Joaquin Valley Business Conditions Index rose for the fourth straight month in May with a dramatic jump to 57.7, according to a release on Friday from the Craig School of Business at Fresno State. 

In April the index was 52.1, which is not a percent and anything above 50 indicates expansion in the next three to six months.

“We are tracking a slowly improving economy,” said Ernie Goss, research associate for the Craig School of Business, in a release. “As in the past several months, companies linked to agriculture and international markets are experiencing upturns in overall economic activity.”

The hiring gauge also increased to 57.9 in May from 55.9 in April.

Although the overal index continues to rise, business confidence dipped to 46.8 from 51.9 the month prior.

The wholesale price dropped to 56 in May from 62 in April.

“Our inflation gauge is sinking at a quickening pace. Slower economic growth and a stronger dollar are both slowing the growth in prices for input across the board,” said Goss. ”I expect the problems in Europe and waning inflationary pressures to push the Federal Reserve to take additional actions in the months ahead.”

New orders was also another area of optimism, as it rose to 58.2, compared to 52.3 in April.