- Japan: First Ten Days Trade (Mar), International Trade, Foreign Banks Foreign Banks in Japan (Feb)
- New Zealand: Tourism Expenditure, International Reserves, RBNZ Analytical Accounts/Statistical Balance Sheet, Foreign Currency Assets, Liabilities, and Currency Flows (Feb); Australia: Flow of Funds (Q4), Job Vacancies (Q1)
- Korea: Building Permits (Feb); Philippines: LFS (Q3)
- US: IIP (Q4)
- more updates...
Economy in Brief
U.S. Mortgage Loan Applications Remain Little Changed; Variable Rate Apps Surge
The MBA total Mortgage Market Volume Index slipped 0.8% last week (-12.4% y/y)...
La Dolce Vita? Italian Confidence Bumps Higher
Italian business and consumer confidence moved higher in March...
U.S. Consumer Confidence Improves Significantly
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index for March strengthened 8.2% (30.7% y/y) to 125.6...
U.S. Energy Product Prices Remain Under Pressure
Regular gasoline prices held steady at $2.32 per gallon last week (12.1% y/y) for the third straight week...
German Federal Debt Levels Fall
German debt level fell outright in Q4 2016 as the ratio of federal debt-to-GDP also fell...
NABE 2018 Forecast: Modest Improvement in Economic Growth & Higher Inflation
The NABE expects 2.5% real U.S. economic growth in 2018 compared to 2.3% forecast for 2017...
by Tom Moeller February 17, 2017
The Conference Board's Composite Index of Leading Economic Indicators increased 0.6% during January (2.5% y/y) following an unrevised 0.5% December gain. Earlier figures were revised slightly higher. A 0.4% increase had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey.
A steeper interest rate yield curve continued to have the largest positive effect on the leading index, followed by more building permits, fewer initial claims for unemployment insurance, a higher ISM new orders index, improved consumer expectations for business/economic conditions and the leading credit index. Other component series had little effect on the total.
The Index of Coincident Economic Indicators ticked 0.1% higher (1.6% y/) after a 0.3% rise in December. A rise in payroll employment, real personal income less transfers and manufacturing & trade sales contributed positively to the index, while industrial production contributed negatively.
The Index of Lagging Economic Indicators rose 0.3% (3.3% y/y) after a 0.5% gain. The average duration of unemployment, the prime rate charged by banks and the ratio of consumer installment credit to personal income contributed positively to the index. The number of commercial & industrial loans outstanding contributed negatively.
The ratio of coincident-to-lagging indicators also is a leading indicator of economic activity. It measures excesses in the economy relative to its ongoing performance. This ratio declined m/m to a record low.
The Conference Board figures are available in Haver's BCI database; the components are available there, and most are also in USECON. The expectations are in the AS1REPNA database. Visit the Conference Board's site for coverage of leading indicator series from around the world.
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