Midwest Economy Sees Improvement

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- A survey of supply managers and other business executives in nine Midwest and Plains states suggests that for the first time in almost a year, the economy is expanding.

The Mid-America Business Conditions index released Monday rose to 51.7 in July from June's 49.3. July's index was the first time since August 2008 that it rose above growth-neutral 50.

The survey's index ranges between 0 and 100. Any score below 50 suggests a contracting economy over the next three to six months, while a score above 50 indicates an expanding economy.

Creighton University economics professor Ernie Goss says the regional economy is likely on the mend.

The survey states are Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota.

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