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For immediate release: March 27, 2012

Dallas Fed: Texas Service Sector Expands Further; Retail Sales Growth Remains Solid in March

DALLAS—Texas service sector activity increased in March, according to business executives responding to the Texas Service Sector Outlook Survey (TSSOS).

The survey is conducted monthly by the Dallas Fed to obtain a timely assessment of activity in the state’s service sector, which represents 59 percent of the state economy and employs close to 7 million workers.

The TSSOS revenue index—a key measure of state service sector conditions—fell from 22.8 to 16.5, which suggests revenue growth slowed slightly. 

Positive readings in the survey generally indicate expansion of service sector activity, while readings below zero generally indicate contraction.

Labor market indicators also reflected slower growth. The employment index fell to 7.7, its lowest reading in four months, and the hours worked index edged down but remained in positive territory.

Respondents noted continued improvement in the broader economy as indexes reflecting general business conditions remained strong but declined slightly. The general business activity index moved down to 18.9, its fifth consecutive positive reading.

Indexes of future service sector activity remained in positive territory.

TSSOS also includes a component called the Texas Retail Outlook Survey, which uses information from respondents in the retail and wholesale sectors only.

Retail sales increased in March, according to business executives responding to the Texas Retail Outlook Survey. The sales index rose from 17.5 to 22, marking 10 consecutive months of sales increases. Inventories rose.

Indexes of future retail sector activity generally remained in solid positive territory in March.


Media contact:
Alexander Johnson
Phone: (214) 922-5288