The Iowa Leading Indicators Index remained unchanged in August from 107.2 recorded in July, the Iowa Department of Revenue said today. The monthly diffusion index increased to 68.8 in August from 62.5 in July, with five of eight components contributing positively.

July revisions include an increase in average manufacturing hours and a slight decrease in the agriculture futures profit index, with neither of the revisions having a noticeable impact on the index. The five positive contributors to the index in August were diesel fuel consumption, the new orders index, the agriculture futures profit index, average weekly unemployment claims and average manufacturing hours.

Residential building permits, the Iowa stock market index and the national yield spread fell in August. The 12-month moving average of residential building permits decreased to 1,108 from 1,153 in July and was 25.7 percent below August 2016, yet 41.2 percent above the historical average for the month. The dramatic decrease in the year-over-year permits was due to August 2016 having the highest number of permits recorded beginning in 1998 at 2,117 permits. The 1,574 permits for August 2017 was the second-highest number of permits since October 2013 and the 17th-highest since January 1998. Decreases were primarily experienced in permits for single-family homes.