For the first time since December, the latest statewide economic survey indicated a slight dip in Iowa’s growth index, but the overall picture is still very healthy. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says his department’s monthly survey of supply managers and business leaders in Iowa shows the state’s economy continuing to hum during May.

Goss says: “The index continues to point to good growth in the months ahead and of course that’s good for the economy. We see ethanol production having some real positive impacts, and likewise, some of the truck transportation remains strong, even with the record gasoline prices we’re seeing in Iowa and the region.”

With the summer months just ahead, Goss expects a surge in hiring for part-time, full-time and temporary help. “Hiring is looking very good for this time of the year. Compared to last year, it’s not quite as good, but still strong., ” Goss says, “the national numbers that came out this morning were likewise very good. This part of the country, including Iowa, is growing at a much faster pace than the rest of the nation. That can be traced to very good farm income, ethanol production, biofuels also having some real positive impacts.”

Goss says expanding economic conditions in Iowa have been very good for business activity for computer and electronic-component manufacturers and for trucking firms. Still, he says non-durable goods manufacturers, including food processors, are seeing “softer” economic conditions.