Amarillo’s economy remains slightly stronger, with strength from retail sales, tourism, and employment, offsetting lower commodity prices and slowing in building.
Retail Sales continue to track 6% above last year and YTD; however, this remains slightly below the rate of inflation. Vehicle Sales rebounded this month, with New up 43%, as inventories became available and Used up 22%, as lower prices spurred buying, even though financing costs were higher.
Tourism is strong. Motel collections were up 53%, but this appears to be offsetting last month’s drop. Airline Boardings continue improving, running 20% ahead of last year.
The Employment numbers look good, with 3,600 more people working in the Employer’s Survey. The Household Survey shows 1,700 more, (which may be part time moving to full time). Wages are up 4.6% from a year ago.
Housing continues steady, even though mortgage rates are much higher, with starts even with last month, but up 54% from a year ago. The YTD starts are down 13% from last year, but the Median house price is up 9% from last year and 6% from last month (see attached statewide comparison).
Energy has slowed, with Drilling Rigs dropping from 6 to 4, and Oil prices down 23%. The big drop has been the 70% decline in Natural Gas prices.
Commodity prices continue to show weakness; and lack of moisture is cutting potential yields. Wheat is down 31%, Corn down 10%, Cotton down 20%, and Milk down 25%. Fat Cattle are up 13%.
Due to computer issues, the City was unable to provide Building Permit numbers at this time.
*Base-100, January 1988
This document was prepared by Amarillo National Bank on behalf of itself for distribution in Amarillo, Texas and is provided for informational purposes only. The information, opinions, estimates and forecasts contained herein relate to specific dates and are subject to change without notice due to market and other fluctuations. The information, opinions, estimates and forecasts contained in this document have been gathered or obtained from public sources believed to be accurate, complete and/or correct. The information and observations contained herein are solely statements of opinion and not statements of fact or recommendations to purchase, sell or make any other investment decisions.
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