Global Business Cycle Indicators
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Released: Tuesday, June 16, 2015
The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.K. increased 0.4 percent, and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) increased 0.2 percent in April.
- The Conference Board LEI for the U.K. increased again in April. The LEI was revised upward between December 2014 and February 2015, after first quarter data for total gross operating surplus of corporations became available. In the six-month period ending April 2015, the leading economic index increased 1.4 percent (about a 2.9 percent annual rate), an improvement from 0.6 percent (about a 1.3 percent annual rate) over the previous six months. Meanwhile, the strengths among the leading indicators have become more widespread than the weaknesses over the past six months.
- The Conference Board CEI for the U.K., a measure of current economic activity, edged up in April. The coincident economic index increased 1.4 percent (about a 2.9 percent annual rate) between October 2014 and April 2015, up from 0.6 percent (about a 1.2 percent annual rate) over the previous six months. The strengths among the coincident indicators have remained very widespread, with all components advancing over the past six months. Meanwhile, real GDP grew by 1.5 percent (annual rate) in the first quarter of this year, after gaining 2.3 percent (annual rate) in the fourth quarter of 2014.
- In April, the LEI for the U.K. advanced for the fifth consecutive month. As a result, its six-month growth rate has improved considerably with widespread strength among its components. Meanwhile, the CEI has been increasing modestly in recent months and its six-month growth rate has also improved. Taken together, the current behavior of the composite indexes suggests that the economy is likely to continue to moderately grow throughout the summer, and growth could potentially pick up.
LEADING INDICATORS. Six of the seven components that make up The Conference Board LEI for the U.K. increased in April. The positive contributors—from the largest positive contributor to the smallest—were consumer confidence, the yield spread, productivity for the whole economy*, stock prices, volume of expected output, and total gross operating surplus of corporations*. Only order book volume declined.
With the 0.4 percent increase in April, The Conference Board LEI for the U.K. now stands at 113.6 (2010=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.3 percent in March and increased 0.7 percent in February. During the six-month span through April, the leading economic index increased 1.4 percent, with six of the seven components advancing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 85.7 percent).
COINCIDENT INDICATORS. All four components that make up The Conference Board CEI for the U.K. increased in April. The positive contributors—from the largest positive contributor to the smallest—were retail sales, employment*, real household disposable income*, and industrial production.
With the increase of 0.2 percent in April, The Conference Board CEI for the U.K. now stands at 106.0 (2010=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.2 percent in both March and February. During the six-month period through April, the coincident economic index increased 1.4 percent, with all four components advancing (diffusion index, six-month span equals 100.0 percent).
DATA AVAILABILITY: The data series used to compute The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.K. and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for the U.K. reported in this release are those available “as of” 10 A.M. ET on Thursday, June 11, 2015. Some series are estimated as noted below.
* Series in The Conference Board LEI for the U.K. that are based on our estimates are productivity for the whole economy and total gross operating surplus of corporations. Series in The Conference Board CEI for the U.K. that are based on our estimates are employment and real household disposable income.
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