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Benchmark Revisions - September 2005

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Released: Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for Korea increased 0.1 percent and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for Korea increased 0.2 percent in July.

  • The Conference Board LEI for Korea increased slightly in July following three consecutive declines. Declines in the inverted index of inventories to shipments and the inverted bond yield were more than offset by positive contributions from private construction orders and letter of credit arrivals. Despite the small gain in July, the six-month change in the leading economic index remained negative, falling ?1.5 percent (about a ?3.0 percent annual rate) between January and July 2013, a sharp reversal from the increase of 0.8 percent (about a 1.7 percent annual rate) for the previous six months. Additionally, the weaknesses among the leading indicators have been much more widespread than the strengths in recent months.
  • The Conference Board CEI for Korea, a measure of current economic activity, also increased slightly in July. The coincident economic index declined by 0.3 percent (about a ?0.5 percent annual rate) in the six-month period ending July 2013, down from the increase of 0.9 percent (about a 1.7 percent annual rate) during the previous six months. The strengths and weaknesses among the coincident indicators have been balanced in the last six months. At the same time, real GDP grew at a 4.5 percent annual rate in the second quarter of 2013, up from 3.4 percent (annual rate) in the first quarter.  
  • The LEI for Korea increased slightly after declining in the last three months. However, its six-month change remains in negative territory, with widespread weaknesses among the leading indicators. Meanwhile, the CEI for Korea increased slightly again in July, but its six-month change also remains negative. Taken together, the recent weaknesses in both the LEI and CEI continue to suggest that the rate of economic expansion is likely to slow in the near term.

LEADING INDICATORS. Three of the seven components that make up The Conference Board LEI for Korea increased in July. The positive contributors – from the largest positive contributor to the smallest – were private construction orders, letter of credit arrivals, and value of machinery orders. Negative contributors – from the largest negative contributor to the smallest – were (inverted) index of inventories to shipments, (inverted) yield of government public bonds, stock prices, and real exports FOB.    

With the 0.1 percent increase in July, The Conference Board LEI for Korea now stands at 119.0 (2004=100). Based on revised data, this index declined 1.1 percent in June and declined 0.5 percent in May. During the six-month span through July, the leading economic index decreased 1.5 percent, with two of the seven components advancing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 28.6 percent).

COINCIDENT INDICATORS. Three of the four components that make up The Conference Board CEI for Korea increased in July. The positive contributors – in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest – were total employment, the wholesale and retail sales component, and monthly cash earnings*. Industrial production declined in July.

With the 0.2 percent increase in July, The Conference Board CEI for Korea now stands at 117.3 (2004=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.1 percent in June and decreased 0.1 percent in May. During the six-month span through July, the coincident economic index decreased 0.3 percent, with two of the four components advancing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 50.0 percent).

DATA AVAILABILITY. The data series used to compute The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for Korea reported in this release are those available “as of” 10 A.M. (ET) on September 11, 2013.  

* The series in the coincident economic index based on The Conference Board’s estimates is monthly cash earnings.  There is no forecasted series in the leading economic index.

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

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