An index of leading economic indicators in San Diego County rose 0.1 percent in August, compared to the previous month, led by a 0.51 increase in residential building permits and a 0.78 percent gain in confidence in the national economy.

Consumer confidence was also up – 0.16 percent.

That’s according to the monthly University of San Diego Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate’s Index of Leading Economic Indicators, authored by USD professor and economist Alan Gin. The index stands at 145.2.

On the negative side, gas prices in the county are $3.10 a gallon, compared to $2.77 a year ago. With every cent increase, an estimated $1 million a month is taken out of the local economy, according to the index.

“While annoying, that amount is not large enough to disrupt the local economy and is not likely to be sustained for a significant period of time,” the index states.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 4.5 percent in August, compared to 4.4 percent in July. The rate dipped compared to the 4.7 percent in August 2016.

August marked the index’s fourth straight month of increases.

Positive but slower growth is expected for the rest of the year and at least through the first half of 2018, the index states.