The economies of Iowa and the Midwest continue to thrive according to the latest monthly survey from Creighton University. Creighton economist Jim Knudsen says the new survey of business leaders and supply managers in Iowa finds strong economic conditions continued for May, dipping just slightly after a record high in April. Knudsen says Iowa’s “business conditions” index dropped slightly to 75-point-nine points from April’s record of 81 points, though anything above 50 indicates growth. He says Iowa’s job picture also shows a solid footing and points toward positive months ahead. Knudsen says Iowa’s employment numbers look good at 77-point-six points. He says Iowa has added 37-hundred jobs so far in 2004, representing three-tenths of a percent job growth. He says job growth in the second half of the year will more than triple this rate based on the monthly survey. He says the only negative in the latest report is on the “prices paid” index, but overall, Knudsen says the whole picture is looking good for the economies of Iowa and the eight other states in the Midwest region.He says consumers are paying more for a variety of commodities, especially in the energy category which includes gas and oil, which continues to bring the pressure of inflation.