Global Business Cycle Indicators
Press Release Archive
Released: Thursday, October 20, 2011
The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.2 percent in September to 116.4 (2004 = 100), following a 0.3 percent increase in August, and a 0.6 percent increase in July.
Says Ataman Ozyildirim, economist at The Conference Board: “September data shows moderating growth in both the LEI and the CEI. The weaknesses among the leading indicator components have become slightly more widespread in September. Moreover, the CEI suggests current economic conditions have been slow, with weak gains in all four components over the past six months. The slow pace in the LEI suggests a growing chance that this sluggish economy is going to be here for a while.”
Says Ken Goldstein, economist at The Conference Board: “The LEI is pointing to soft economic conditions through the end of 2011. There is a risk that already low confidence – consumer, business and investor – could weaken further, putting downward pressure on demand and tipping the economy into recession. The probability of a downturn starting over the next few months remains at about 50 percent.”
The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for the U.S. increased 0.1 percent in September to 103.3 (2004 = 100), following a 0.1 percent decline in August, and a 0.2 percent increase in July.
The Conference Board Lagging Economic Index® (LAG) increased 0.2 percent in September to 110.4 (2004 = 100), following a 0.2 percent increase in August, and a 0.3 percent increase in July.
About The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S.
The composite economic indexes are the key elements in an analytic system designed to signal peaks and troughs in the business cycle. The leading, coincident, and lagging economic indexes are essentially composite averages of several individual leading, coincident, or lagging indicators. They are constructed to summarize and reveal common turning point patterns in economic data in a clearer and more convincing manner than any individual component – primarily because they smooth out some of the volatility of individual components.
The ten components of The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® for the U.S. include:
Average weekly hours, manufacturing
Average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance
Manufacturers’ new orders, consumer goods and materials
Index of supplier deliveries – vendor performance
Manufacturers' new orders, nondefense capital goods
Building permits, new private housing units
Stock prices, 500 common stocks
Money supply, M2
Interest rate spread, 10-year Treasury bonds less federal funds
Index of consumer expectations
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About The Conference Board
The Conference Board is a global, independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world’s leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States.
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