Midwest Economy Blog
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By Chicago Fed Staff Writer       November 12, 2022

Crop yields have been strong in the Seventh District and commodity prices robust, according to the third quarter 2022 issue of the Chicago Fed AgLetter. Its author, David Oppedahl, a policy advisor at the Chicago Fed, discusses these and other topics covered in the latest and previous issues, including rising farmland values and the impact of the war in Ukraine on Midwest agriculture. The conve... Read More

By Katherine Bennett, Thomas Walstrum       October 13, 2022

Business cycles are periodic fluctuations in economic activity around its long-term historical trend. Over the past 70 years, the U.S. economy has gone through several business cycles, with each one involving a recession phase and expansion phase.1 No business cycle is exactly the same in terms of what led to the recession, which sectors of the economy were most adversely affected, and how the e... Read More

By Katherine Bennett, David Oppedahl       September 7, 2022

On September 28–29, 2022, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research will cohost a conference called Creating Conversations on the Challenges and Opportunities Facing Rural Economic Development in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Ahead of this event, we provide a primer on how some governmental institutions define rural and related terminology to help establi... Read More

By Chicago Fed Staff Writer       August 12, 2022

David Oppedahl, senior business economist at the Chicago Fed, discusses agriculture conditions in the Seventh District, delving into data from the latest Chicago Fed AgLetter, crop and livestock prices, the current growing season, and the impact of the war in Ukraine on global markets. Q: What did the second quarter of 2022 tell us about the state of the Midwest agriculture industry? A: The ag... Read More

By Martin Lavelle, Elizabeth Kepner       July 7, 2022

In this blog post, our primary aim is to examine whether and how moving patterns between states, metropolitan areas, and other locations across the U.S. have changed since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Using migration data from United Van Lines,1 we compare migration patterns in 2018 and 2019, before the pandemic started within the U.S., with those in 2020 and 2... Read More

By Rick Mattoon       May 16, 2022

During the pandemic the federal government provided multiple rounds of fiscal support for state and local governments, businesses, and households. One of the larger packages came from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021. Enacted on March 11, 2021, ARPA provides $1.9 trillion in total funding, with $350 billion in support for state and local governments. In this blog post, I outline the s... Read More

By Levi Bognar, Thomas Walstrum       May 12, 2022

The pace of economic growth continued to slow in the Seventh Federal Reserve District1 during the first half of 2023. While total employment was still growing during the first six months of this year, the pace was slower than in 2022—and for manufacturing employment, even more so. As demand weakened and supply chain pressures subsided, manufacturers began reporting higher-than-comfortable invent... Read More

By Nicholas Kumamoto, Thomas Walstrum       February 22, 2022

When analyzing an area’s economic growth, economists commonly classify the determinants of growth as being either cyclical or structural. A cyclical factor plays out over a short period of time and typically has a small effect beyond then. In contrast, a structural factor can affect an area’s growth over many years or even decades. The Covid-19 pandemic is largely a cyclical event that has domina... Read More

By May Tysinger, Thomas Walstrum       January 10, 2022

The Seventh District (and the nation) experienced strong growth during 2021 as the economy recovered from the pandemic recession. But the ebbs and flows of the pandemic continue to hold sway over the pace of economic activity and prevented a complete recovery. The labor market tightened considerably over the year, while supply chain constraints held back growth in manu... Read More

By May Tysinger, Thomas Walstrum       August 24, 2021

At the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, many workplaces in the U.S. were closed (either voluntarily or by government order) to limit the spread of the virus. Some of these workplaces, such as factories, reopened within a few months. Yet many other workplaces remained closed, and the vast majority of their employees continued to perform their tasks off-site. The... Read More

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