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Benchmark Revisions - September 2007

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Released: Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Conference Board announced today that the leading index for Spain increased 0.1 percent and the coincident index increased 0.3 percent in February.

  • The leading index increased slightly in February, following five months of strong gains. The Spanish contribution to Euro M2 continued to be the largest positive contributor to the leading index. With February's gain, the leading index grew 2.9 percent from August to February (a 5.9 percent annual rate). In February, the number of components rising was equal to the number of components falling, but in recent months, the strengths among the leading indicators have been slightly more widespread than weaknesses.
  • The coincident index also increased again in February. The strengths among the coincident indicators have been very widespread in recent months and the largest positive contributor continued to be final household consumption*. In the first months of 2007, this index of current economic activity has continued to grow steadily — at about a 4.5 percent annual rate — slightly above its growth rate in 2005 and early 2006.
  • The six-month growth rate of the leading index picked up sharply through the end of the fourth quarter of 2006 (to about a 7.0 to 7.5 percent annual rate), and moderated slightly down to about a 5.0 to 6.0 percent annual rate. At the same time, real GDP growth increased to a 4.1 percent average annual rate in the second half of 2006 (including a 4.8 percent annual rate in the fourth quarter), slightly above the 3.9 percent average rate in the first half of the year. The recent behavior of the leading index suggests that economic growth is likely to continue at a moderate to strong pace in the near term.

LEADING INDICATORS. Three of the six components that make up the leading index increased in September. The positive contributors — in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest — are the Spanish contribution to Euro M2, order books survey, and job placings. The negative contributors — in order from the largest negative contributor to the smallest — are the capital equipment component of industrial production, the Spanish equity price index, and the inverted long-term government bond yield.

With the increase of 0.1 percent in February, the leading index now stands at 151.5 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.6 percent in January and increased 0.7 percent in December. During the six-month span through February, the index increased 2.9 percent, and four of the six components advanced (diffusion index, six-month span equals 75.0 percent).

COINCIDENT INDICATORS. Three of the four components that make up the coincident index increased in February. The positive contributors — in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest — are final household consumption*, industrial production excluding construction, and real imports*. The retail sales survey declined in February.

With the increase of 0.3 percent in February, the coincident index now stands at 160.2 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.6 percent in January and increased 0.3 percent in December. During the six-month span through February, the index increased 2.3 percent, and all of the four components advanced (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. (ET) April 13, 2007. Some series are estimated as noted below.

NOTES: Series in the coincident index based on The Conference Board estimates include final household consumption and real imports. There are no series in the leading index based on The Conference Board estimates.

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

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