- New Zealand: International Trade (Feb)
- Korea: Consumer Survey Index (Mar); Philippines: Public Finance (Jan)
- Weekly: **Initial Claims Data Revisions Completed**
- Euro area: Flash Consumer Confidence Indicator (Mar)
- US: New Residential Sales (Feb)
- Belgium: Business Survey (Mar)
- Uruguay: GDP (Q4)
- more updates...
Economy in Brief
Kansas City Federal Reserve Factory Index Strengthens; Expectations Surge
The Kansas City Fed reported that its index of regional manufacturing sector business activity increased to 20 during March...
U.S. Initial Unemployment Insurance Claims Rise
Initial claims for unemployment insurance increased to 258,000 (-3.0% y/y) during the week ended March 18...
U.K. Retail Looks Less Bulletproof
For the most part, the assessments embodied in the March survey from the UK's CBI are being taken as being upbeat...
U.S. Existing Home Sales Fall to Five-Month Low; Inventory Remains Tight
Sales of existing single-family homes declined 3.7% (+5.4% y/y) to 5.480 million units (AR) during February...
U.S. FHFA House Price Index Momentum Diminishes
The FHFA U.S. house price index remained unchanged during January following a 0.4% December increase ...
Japan's Trade Trends Turn Sharply Higher
Japan has logged its largest current account surplus since April 2010...
by Tom Moeller March 17, 2017
The Conference Board's Composite Index of Leading Economic Indicators increased 0.6% (3.1% y/y) during February, the same as during the prior two months. A 0.3% rise had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey.
A steeper interest rate yield curve had the largest positive effect on the leading index, along with a higher ISM new orders index. Fewer initial claims for unemployment insurance followed along with higher stock prices. Improved consumer expectations for business/economic conditions and the leading credit index also added to the index's gain, but fewer building permits contributed negatively.
The Index of Coincident Economic Indicators increased 0.3% (2.0% y/y) after a 0.1% rise in January. It raised the three-month rate of growth to 3.2% (AR), its swiftest since January 2015. Each of the index component series contributed positively to last month's rise, including payroll employment, real personal income less transfers, manufacturing & trade sales and industrial production.
The Index of Lagging Economic Indicators rose 0.2% (2.7% y/y) after a 0.2% gain. The ratio of consumer installment credit to personal income accounted for the increase while 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 increased slightly m/m from its 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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