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Released: Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for Mexico increased 0.5 percent and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) increased 0.2 percent in August.

  • The Conference Board LEI for Mexico increased in August for the second consecutive month. A large gain in net inefficient inventories more than offset negative contributions from stock prices and the (inverted) real exchange rate. Between February and August 2013, the leading economic index decreased by 2.0 percent (about a -3.9 percent annual rate), down sharply from the increase of 3.5 percent (about a 7.1 percent annual rate) for the previous six months. Moreover, the weaknesses among the leading indicators have become more widespread than the strengths in the last six months.  
  • The Conference Board CEI for Mexico, a measure of current economic activity, increased slightly in August. The coincident economic index grew by 0.7 percent (about a 1.5 percent annual rate) during the six-month period ending August 2013, slightly faster than the growth of 0.2 percent (about a 0.5 percent annual rate) for the previous six months. Meanwhile, real GDP contracted 2.9 percent (annual rate) in the second quarter, after increasing 0.1 percent (annual rate) in the first quarter of this year.
  • The LEI for Mexico increased in both July and August, but its six-month growth continued to slow and has become more negative. On the other hand, the CEI for Mexico increased slightly in August, and its six-month growth rate has picked up somewhat compared to the first half of this year. Despite the slight improvement in the growth of the CEI, continued widespread weakness in the LEI in recent months suggest that economic conditions are unlikely to improve considerably through the end of 2013.

LEADING INDICATORS.  Three of the six components that make up The Conference Board LEI for Mexico increased in August. The positive contributors to the index—from the largest positive contributor to the smallest—were net insufficient inventories, the industrial production construction component, and the US refiners’ acquisition cost of domestic and imported crude oil.  Stock prices and the (inverted) real exchange rate decreased in August, while the (inverted) federal funds rate remained unchanged.

With the 0.5 percent increase in August, The Conference Board LEI for Mexico now stands at 125.1 (2004=100).  Based on revised data, this index increased 0.2 percent in July and declined 1.5 percent in June.  During the six-month span through August, the index decreased 2.0 percent, with two of the six components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 33.3 percent).

COINCIDENT INDICATORS. Two of the three components that make up The Conference Board CEI for Mexico increased in August. The positive contributors —from the largest positive contributor to the smallest— were industrial production and number of people employed (measured by IMSS beneficiaries).  Retail sales declined in August.

With the increase of 0.2 percent in August, The Conference Board CEI for Mexico now stands at 123.5 (2004=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.2 percent in July and remained unchanged in June.  During the six-month span through August, the index increased 0.7 percent, with all three components increasing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 100.0 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. October 21, 2013. Some series are estimated as noted below.

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

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