by Valorie Hanni Rice
Senior Specialist, Business Information

Real Gross Domestic Product increased 1.5% in the third quarter 2015, according to the advance estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis on Oct 30. It had increased 3.9% in the second quarter. Another estimate of the third quarter GDP, based on more complete source data, will be released November 24.

There were 3,753 initial unemployment claims in Arizona for the week ending October 17, down 594 from the week prior. The four-week moving average remained basically the same at 3,925.  Continued claims in Arizona are 12% lower than the same time last year.  Nationally, filings for unemployment benefits rose 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 260,000 for the week ending October 24. The four-week average fell to 259,250, which is the lowest level since December 1973.   

Arizona metropolitan areas were among the 353 of 387 metro areas in the U.S. that had unemployment rates drop in September. The Bureau of Labor Statistics released September metro area employment on Oct 28. Even though the Yuma unemployment rate dropped 1% from August, at 26.0% they still had the highest rate in the nation. Bismarck, ND had the lowest rate in the nation at 2.0%. The September unemployment rate in the rest of Arizona metros were: 8.4% in Lake Havasu City-Kingman, 7.6% in Sierra Vista-Douglas, 6.4% in Flagstaff, 5.7% in Tucson, 5.6% in Prescott, and 5.5% in Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale.

Phoenix home prices rose 4.9% over the year in August, according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices released Oct 27. This was just above the national one-year change of 4.7%. Denver and San Francisco had the highest change in home prices of the 20-city composite in August, both with 10.7%, while New York was the lowest with 1.8%.


Hands and calculator photo courtesy Shutterstock.

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