NWI Indiana Coincident Index Is First Measure of Regional Economy

Bala Arshanapalli

The Northwest Indiana Coincident Index is the first economic measure of a regional economy in Indiana and among the few regional indexes in the U.S., said Bala Arshanapalli, Ph.D., Professor of Finance, Indiana University Northwest. The index has two components. The Coincident Index provides a monthly snapshot of the regional economy. The Leading Index predicts how the economy performs in the next six months. Launched in 2012, the economic index was developed using a complex formula which reflects the appropriate weighing of regional economic data. This data ranges from steel production to retail sales, from employment to average hours worked in manufacturing. The Index is unique in that it includes a single indicator that measures the overall strength of the regional economy. “The Index provides the first significant tool to measure the economic wellbeing of Northwest Indiana,” said Anna Rominger, J.D., Dean, School of Business and Economics. The index was developed by Dr. Arshanapalli; Dr. Micah Pollak, Assistant Professor of Economics, who currently prepares the index; and Dr. Donald Coffin, Emeritus Associate Professor of Economics.  Modeled after state and national coincident indices published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, the NWI Coincident Index filled an unmet need. The state index is routinely used to summarize the macroeconomic activity at the state level. But this may not evenly mirror the activity on a regional basis, Arshanapalli said. Published quarterly and featured in The Times, the index is a uniform measure of our regional economy adjusted monthly at www.iun.edu/business.nwi.

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