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Benchmark Revisions - March 2007

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Released: Wednesday, September 22, 2004

The Conference Board announced today that leading index for Germany was unchanged and the coincident index increased 0.3 percent in July.

  • The leading index was unchanged in July, but there were large upward revisions to the previous four months as actual national accounts data became available for the second quarter of 2004. As a result, the growth rate of the leading index is not as weak as reported last month. The coincident index increased again in July, and is still on the rising trend that began in mid-2003.
  • The current growth rate of the leading index is about 1.0 percent (annual rate), up from -2.0 percent earlier this year but still lower than the peak 4.0-5.0 rate reached late last year.
  • Corresponding to the strength in the leading index in late 2003, real GDP growth picked up to a 1.8 percent average annual rate in the first half of 2004. The recent behavior of the leading index suggests that the economy should continue growing, but probably more slowly than in the first half of the year.

Leading Indicators. Four of the eight components in the leading index increased in July. The positive contributors to the leading index - in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest - are new orders in investment goods industries, the inventory change series*, new residential construction orders*, and gross enterprises and properties income*. Consumer confidence, stock prices, and the yield spread decreased in July, while the growth rate of CPI for services remained unchanged.

Holding steady in July, the leading index now stands at 102.6 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.3 percent in June and increased 0.1 percent in May. During the six-month span through July, the leading index increased 0.4 percent, with three of the eight components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 43.8 percent).

Coincident Indicators. All four components that make up the coincident index increased in July. The positive contributors to the coincident index were manufacturing sales, industrial production, retail trade, and employed persons*.

With the 0.3 percent increase in July, the coincident index now stands at 103.8 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.1 percent in June and decreased 0.1 percent in May. During the six-month period through July, the coincident index increased 0.4 percent, with two of the four components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 50 percent).

Data Availability. The data series used by The Conference Board to compute the two September 17, 2004. Some series are estimated as noted below.

NOTES: Series in the leading index for Germany that are based on The Conference Board estimates are inventory change, new residential construction orders, and gross enterprises and properties income. Series in the coincident index for Germany that are based on The Conference Board estimates include employed persons.

THESE DATA ARE FOR ANALYSIS PURPOSES ONLY. NOT FOR REDISTRIBUTION, PUBLISHING, DATABASING, OR PUBLIC POSTING WITHOUT EXPRESS WRITTEN PERMISSION.

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