URI professor sees more momentum in economy

An economist at the University of Rhode Island says the state finished out the fourth quarter of last year with a good deal of momentum and that the economy has shifted into a higher gear.

URI Professor Leonard Lardaro said this week in his Current Conditions Index for December that the strong performances recorded during the last three months of the year were not so-called "one month wonders."

Still, Rhode Island is tied with Nevada for the highest unemployment rate in the country, at 10.2 percent.

The Current Conditions Index tracks several economic indicators on a monthly basis. For December, 11 of the 12 indicators improved and several had what Lardaro called "strong performances."