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Texas Service Sector Activity Strengthened in November, Says Dallas Fed Survey

For immediate release: December 1, 2015

DALLAS—Texas service sector activity continued to increase in November, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Texas Service Sector Outlook Survey (TSSOS).

The revenue index—a key measure of state service sector conditions— rose slightly to 10.3.

“Service sector activity continued increasing in November and picked up pace slightly from last month, but the index still remains below its 2014 average,” said Amy Jordan, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas assistant economist.

The survey is conducted monthly by the Dallas Fed to obtain a timely assessment of activity in the state’s service sector, which represents almost 70 percent of the state economy and employs close to 7.6 million workers.

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

The employment index rose from 7 in October to 10.6 in November, while the hours worked index fell slightly from 3 in October to 1.5 in November.

Perceptions of broader economic conditions continued to reflect optimism in November. The general business activity index dipped 2 points to 3.6 in November, and the company outlook index ticked up to 6.6.

Expectations regarding future business conditions reflected less optimism in November. Both the index of future general business activity and the index of future company outlook remained positive but edged lower. However, indexes of future service sector activity, such as future revenue and employment, reflected more optimism this month.

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 continued to reflect expansion but at a slower pace than last month, according to business executives responding to the Texas Retail Outlook Survey. The sales index moved down from 8.9 in October to 5.6 in November.

Retailers’ perceptions of broader economic conditions reflected less optimism in November. The general business activity index dropped 10 points to a reading near zero. The company outlook index fell sharply from 17.6 in October to 5 in November.
Indexes of future retail sector activity remained in solid positive territory in November.


Media contact:
Justin Jones
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Phone: 214-922-5449