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Benchmark Revisions - September 2005

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Released: Tuesday, October 14, 2003

The Conference Board announced today that the leading index for Korea increased 0.2 percent and the coincident index increased 0.3 percent in August.

  • The leading index increased for the third consecutive month in August. The June and July increases were both revised up. The leading index has now increased by 2.9 percent from the recent low reached in March (about a 7.0 percent annual rate), and the pickup over this period has been widespread.
  • More generally, the leading index has been increasing since 2001 (at about a 5.0 percent annual rate), but the growth rate of the leading index slowed in early 2003. Reflecting this, real GDP growth slowed sharply in the first quarter, but the pickup in the leading index since March is signaling a moderate strengthening of economic growth in the near term.

Leading Indicators. Five of the eight components that make up the leading index increased in August. The positive contributors - from the largest positive contributor to the smallest – were stock prices, letter of credit arrivals*, authorized building permits*, monthly hours worked*, and real exports. Two components in the leading index decreased in August. The negative contributors – from the larger negative contributor to the smaller – were (inverted) yield of government public bonds and value of machinery orders. The (Inverted) index of inventories to shipments remained unchanged in August.

With the 0.2 percent increase in August, the leading index now stands at 119.4 (1990=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.5 percent in July and increased 2.2 percent in June. During the six-month span through August, the index increased 2.0 percent, with six of its eight components advancing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 50.0 percent).

Coincident Indicators. Three of the four components that make up the coincident index increased in August. The positive contributors to the index - from the largest positive contributor to the smallest – were the (inverted) unemployment rate, wholesale and retail sales, and industrial production. The negative contributor to the index was total employment.

With the increase of 0.3 percent in August, the coincident index now stands at 111.0 (1990=100). This index decreased 0.3 percent in July and decreased 0.1 percent in June. During the six-month span through August, the coincident index decreased 0.8 percent, with none of its components advancing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 0.0 percent).

Data Availability. The data series used to compute the two composite indexes reported in this release are those available “as of” 10 A.M. (ET) on October 10, 2003.

*Notes: The series in the leading index based on The Conference Board’s estimates are monthly hours worked, letter of credit arrivals in manufacturing, and authorized building permits, new floor space. The series in the coincident index based on The Conference Board’s estimates is industrial production.

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

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