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Released: Friday, November 12, 2004

The Conference Board announced today that the leading index for Mexico increased 1.2 percent and the coincident index remained unchanged in September.

  • The leading index increased sharply in September, with stock prices and oil prices being the major contributors to this month’s gain. As a result, the growth rate of the leading index has picked up slightly from the previous several months, but is still below its peak reached earlier this year.
  • The coincident index was unchanged in September, and has been on an essentially flat or slightly rising trend since the beginning of 2004. At the same time, however, real GDP increased at almost a 5.0 percent average annual rate in the first half of 2004, including 3.9 percent in the second quarter. The recent behavior of the leading index suggests that the economy will continue to grow in the near term, but perhaps at a slower rate than in the first half of 2004.

Leading Indicators.Three of the six components that make up the leading index decreased in September. The negative contributors to the index—from the largest negative contributor to the smallest one—are net insufficient inventories, the (inverted) federal funds rate, and the (inverted) real exchange rate. The industrial production construction component*, US refiners acquisition cost of domestic and imported crude oil, and stock prices increased in September.

With the increase of 1.2 percent in September, the leading index now stands at 146.7 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.8 percent in August and increased 0.1 percent in July. During the six-month span through September, the index increased 2.3 percent, with three of the six components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 50.0 percent).

Coincident Indicators.Two of the four components that make up the coincident index increased in September. The positive contributors were number of people employed (measured by IMSS beneficiaries) and industrial production. The (inverted) unemployment rate declined, while retail sales* remained unchanged in September.

Holding steady in September, the coincident index now stands at 115.2 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index decreased 0.1 percent in August and increased 0.1 percent in July. During the six-month span through September, the index increased 0.6 percent, with three of the four components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 75.0 percent).

Data Availability.The data series used to compute the two composite indexes reported in the tables in this release are those available “as of” 10 A.M. November 11, 2004. Some series are estimated as noted below.

NOTES: Series in the leading index based on The Conference Board estimates include industrial production - construction component. The series in the coincident index based on The Conference Board estimates include retail sales.

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

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