Global Business Cycle Indicators
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Released: Wednesday, June 24, 2015
The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for France increased 0.1 percent and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) remained unchanged in April.
- The Conference Board LEI for France edged up in April, helped by large positive contributions from building permits and stock prices. In the six-month period ending in April 2015, the leading economic index increased 1.0 percent (about a 2.0 percent annual rate), up slightly from 0.9 percent (about a 1.8 percent annual rate) over the prior six months. In addition, the strengths among the leading indicators have become slightly more widespread than the weaknesses over recent months.
- The Conference Board CEI for France, a measure of current economic activity, was unchanged in April. The coincident economic index increased 0.5 percent (about a 1.0 percent annual rate) between October 2014 and April 2015, a reversal from its decline of 0.2 percent (about a −0.4 percent annual rate) over the previous six months. Moreover, the strengths among the coincident indicators have become more widespread than the weaknesses in recent months. Meanwhile, real GDP advanced by 2.2 percent (annual rate) in the first quarter of this year, up from 0.1 percent (annual rate) in the fourth quarter of last year.
- The LEI continued to improve through April, with the majority of its components advancing. As a result, its six-month growth rate is slightly above its rate from six months ago. Meanwhile, the CEI had been moderately improving over the same period. Taken together, the behavior of the composite indexes suggests that the current expansion in the economy is likely to continue through the fall.
LEADING INDICATORS. Five of the seven components that make up The Conference Board LEI for France increased in April. The positive contributors to the index—in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest—were building permits (residential), stock prices, industrial new orders, the yield spread, and the ratio deflator of value added to unit labor cost in manufacturing*. The negative contributors to the index—beginning with the larger negative contributor—were new unemployment claims (inverted) and production expectations.
With the increase of 0.1 percent in April, the leading economic index now stands at 111.3 (2010=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.4 percent in March and increased 0.2 percent in February. During the six-month span through April, the index increased 1.0 percent, and four of the seven components increased (diffusion index, six-month span equals 57.1 percent).
COINCIDENT INDICATORS. Two of the four components that make up The Conference Board CEI for France increased in April. The positive contributors to the index were wage and salaries* and employment*. Industrial production declined in April, while personal consumption of manufactured goods was unchanged.
After no change in April, the coincident economic index now stands at 100.4 (2010=100). Based on revised data, this index was unchanged in March and increased 0.1 percent in February. During the six-month period through April, the index increased 0.5 percent, with three of the four series making a positive contribution (diffusion index, six-month span equals 87.5 percent).
* See notes under data availability.
DATA AVAILABILITY. The data series used to compute The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for France and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for France reported in this release are those available “as of” 10 A.M. ET on June 16, 2015. Some series are estimated as noted below.
*The series in The Conference Board LEI for France that is based on our estimates is the ratio of the deflator of manufacturing value added to unit labor cost in manufacturing and (inverted) new unemployment claims. Series in The Conference Board CEI for France that are based on our estimates are number of employees, personal consumption of manufactured goods and wage and salaries.
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