NEW YORK, April 19, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.3 percent in March to 109.0 (2016 = 100), following a 0.7 percent increase in February, and a 0.8 percent increase in January.
"The U.S. LEI increased in March, and while the monthly gain is slower than in previous months, its six-month growth rate increased further and points to continued solid growth in the U.S. economy for the rest of the year," said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research at The Conference Board. "The strengths among the components of the leading index have been very widespread over the last six months. However, labor market components made negative contributions in March and bear watching in the near future."
The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for the U.S. increased 0.2 percent in March to 103.4 (2016 = 100), following a 0.4 percent increase in February, and a 0.1 percent decline in January.
The Conference Board Lagging Economic Index® (LAG) for the U.S. increased 0.1 percent in March to 104.5 (2016 = 100), following a 0.3 percent increase in February and a 0.3 percent increase in January.
About The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. The composite economic indexes are the key elements in an analytic system designed to signal peaks and troughs in the business cycle. The leading, coincident, and lagging economic indexes are essentially composite averages of several individual leading, coincident, or lagging indicators. They are constructed to summarize and reveal common turning point patterns in economic data in a clearer and more convincing manner than any individual component – primarily because they smooth out some of the volatility of individual components.
The ten components of The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® for the U.S. include:
Average weekly hours, manufacturing Average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance Manufacturers' new orders, consumer goods and materials ISM® Index of New Orders Manufacturers' new orders, nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft orders Building permits, new private housing units Stock prices, 500 common stocks Leading Credit Index™ Interest rate spread, 10-year Treasury bonds less federal funds Average consumer expectations for business conditions
ABOUT THE CONFERENCE BOARD The Conference Board is a global, independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world's leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. Winner of the Consensus Economics 2016 Forecast Accuracy Award (U.S.), The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States. www.conference-board.org