Uncertainty about ‘Omicron’ variant could change North Carolina’s economic future

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RALEIGH – By some measures, the economy is steadily improving, but the emergence of a new variant of the virus that causes COVID-19 may pose a significant risk to North Carolina’s economy.

According to an index from North Carolina State University that tracks economic indicators to forecast the direction of the state’s economy between four and six months ahead, not much changed from September to October 2021.

The index tracked a decline of 0.2% between September and October.

“The Index is suggesting that the labor market in the state will continue to improve, with new jobs added and reductions in the jobless rate,” said Dr. Michael Walden, the William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor Emeritus at North Carolina State University, in an interview with WRAL TechWire.

But the emergence of a new variant of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 adds uncertainty to the future economic conditions in the state and across the United…

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