Rhode Island began the fourth quarter by continuing its positive, though not exactly stunning, momentum. Once again, there was both good news and bad news concerning Rhode Island’s economic performance. First, the good news: the Current Conditions Index rose from 67 (revised down) in September to 75 in October, as nine of its twelve indicators improved. Importantly, several of those improvements were quite stunning. The bad good news emerges when we contrast our state’s performance this year with that in 2012: for a third consecutive month, and the fourth time in five months, the CCI has failed to exceed its year-earlier value. I strongly suspect that this will be the dominant pattern throughout the fourth quarter. If this conjecture proves correct, which I believe it will, we will experience a slowing in our rate of growth relative to the end of last year. One could argue that the late-2012 acceleration confronts us this year with a difficult “comp,” which is true. However, as our state’s current rate of growth is not terribly rapid (Rhode Island’s growth rate in real state GDP for 2012 was only 1.4%), the test of how robust this recovery will ultimately prove to be will be defined by our ability to accelerate rather than sustain growth rates comparable to what we observed at the end of 2012. Fortunately, the US economy is growing more rapidly, which will clearly benefit Rhode Island.