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Benchmark Revisions - May 2008

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Released: Monday, July 24, 2006

The Conference Board announced today that the leading index for Mexico increased 0.3 percent and the coincident index increased 0.5 percent in May.

  • The leading index increased again in May following sharp gains in the previous two months. Oil prices and the net insufficient inventories were the main contributors to the increase in the leading index in May. With this month's gain, the leading index picked up slightly from earlier in the year and it is now growing at almost a 6.0 percent annual rate, but this is still below the rapid growth of 14 percent annual rate through the third quarter of 2005.
  • The coincident index also increased again in May. This measure of current economic activity has been on a slightly rising trend since the beginning of 2005. At the same time, real GDP growth picked up to a 6.9 percent annual rate in the first quarter of 2006, up from the 4.1 percent average rate over the previous two quarters. Despite short-term volatility, the recent behavior of the leading index suggests that the economy is likely to grow at a moderate to strong rate in the near term.

LEADING INDICATORS. Three of the six components that make up the leading index increased in May. The positive contributors to the index-from the largest positive contributor to the smallest one-are net insufficient inventories, the US refiners' acquisition cost of domestic and imported crude oil, and the (inverted) federal funds rate. Stock prices, the (inverted) real exchange rate, and the industrial production construction component* decreased in May.

With the 0.3 percent increase in May, the leading index now stands at 160.5 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 1.0 percent in April and increased 1.1 percent in March. During the six-month span through May, the index increased 2.9 percent, with five of the six components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 83.3 percent).

COINCIDENT INDICATORS. Three of the four components that make up the coincident index increased in May. The positive contributors -from the largest positive contributor to the smallest one-are industrial production, the (inverted) unemployment rate, and number of people employed (measured by IMSS beneficiaries)*. Retail sales* declined in May.

With the increase of 0.5 percent in May, the coincident index now stands at 118.0 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.1 percent in April and increased 0.1 percent in March. During the six-month span through May, 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. July 19, 2006. 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 and unemployment rate.

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

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