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Leading index falls 0.1%

April 17 2008

The Conference Board reported its U.S. leading index of economic indicators rose 0.1% in March to 102. Based on revised data, the index fell 0.3% in February and also declined 0.4% in January.

Five of the 10 leading indicators that make up the leading index increased in March. They were real money supply, index of supplier deliveries (vendor performance), interest rate spread, average weekly manufacturing hours, and manufacturers' new orders for consumer goods and materials. The negative contributors were average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance (inverted), building permits, stock prices, and the index of consumer expectations. One indicator held steady in March, it was manufacturers' new orders for nondefense capital goods.

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