May 15, 2018
The El Paso Household Economic Stress Index increased from 3.3 to 3.9 points between February and March 2018, due to an increase in general price inflation and housing price growth slowdown. On a year-over-year basis, the index is below the March 2017 value of 4.4 points, according to the Borderplex Business Barometer, which is issued quarterly by the University of Texas at El Paso’s Department of Economics and Finance.
El Paso’s median housing price was $147,500 in March, while housing inventory levels dropped below five months’ supply, the first time since October 2006. The unemployment rate remained flat at 4.5%, while enrollment in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program fell below 175,000.
Due to NAFTA uncertainty, the number of export-processing jobs in El Paso’s sister city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico declined for first time since 2011. This metric “may forbode difficulties ahead for this important sector of the border economy,” Borderplex analysts said.
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