U.S. Conference Board, Canadian Composite Indexes Decline at Start of Year
Each of the three economic indexes provided by The Conference Board posted declines of 0.4 percent for the month. The Conference Board Leading Economic Index February decline follows a slight increase in January. Between August 2008 and February 2009, the index fell 2.1 percent, faster than the decline of 1.6 percent (a -3.1 percent annual rate) for the previous six months. In addition, the weaknesses among the leading indicators have remained widespread. The Leading Economic Index for the U.S. now stands at 98.5, continuing a downward trend that began in July 2007.
Six of the indicators that make up the LEI increased in February, including the interest rate spread, index of supplier deliveries (vendor performance), building permits, real money supply, ...