Economist: Bounce back not as strong as expected

The Rhode Island State House in Providence.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A University of Rhode Island professor says his monthly analysis of the economy showed no overall improvement in March.

Leonard Lardaro said Monday the “Current Conditions Index” level was stuck at 58. Six of the 12 indicators he tracks each month improved in March.

Lardaro says the state didn’t bounce back as much as expected from harsh weather in February. He says an uptick in the national rate of economic growth should help Rhode Island throughout 2014 but it’s unclear how much.

Lardaro noted that, once again, the index level failed to improve relative to a year earlier. In March 2013, it stood at 83.

Rhode Island’s unemployment rate was 8.7 percent in March, the highest in the U.S.

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