There was lots of interesting economic data this past week — a crazy and volatile one by any standards.
But there was no sign of that craziness in the release of Georgia’s state revenue figures for July, which showed a solid increase over July 2010. You’ll note that there was a decline in net sales and use tax revenue, but the gross revenue showed a solid increase. That’s a better measure and clearly suggests a growing economy as does the individual income tax revenue. While it’s true that we could be entering recession again even if the year-over-year numbers are showing improvement, it’s doubtful the figures would be so robust.
Note, however, how far we’re still down in revenues — a great barometer of consumer spending and individual wages — compared to the peak year of 2007. Yes, individual income tax receipts are now higher, but that’s sort of a noisy statistic for a variety of reasons so don’t expect to see year-over-year gains quite that sharp consistently. Also, while the inflation rate has been relatively low, there has obviously been some, which means that the current data would look weaker if all of this was in 2011 dollars.