Local indicators start to tick up

An index of local leading indicators improved in February, signaling coming economic improvement in the Wichita area.

Following months of decline, this increase is welcome, said Jeremy Hill, director of the Center for Economic Development and Business Research at Wichita State University, which compiles the index.

CEDBR said seven of the nine index indicators improved from January to February, including the number of Kansas initial unemployment claims declining by more than 50 percent.

Improvement also was helped by the inflation-adjusted value of Wichita's residential building permits increasing 40 percent as well as a more than 13 percent increase in the aerospace stock index.