Thursday, July 23, 2015

Chicago Fed: Index shows "Economic Growth Picked Up Slightly in June"

by Bill McBride on 7/23/2015 09:48:00 AM

The Chicago Fed released the national activity index (a composite index of other indicators): Economic Growth Picked Up Slightly in June

Led by improvements in production- and employment-related indicators, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) moved up to +0.08 in June from –0.08 in May. Three of the four broad categories of indicators that make up the index increased from May, and two of the four categories made positive contributions to the index in June.

The index’s three-month moving average, CFNAI-MA3, edged up to –0.01 in June from –0.07 in May. June’s CFNAI-MA3 suggests that growth in national economic activity was very close to its historical trend. The economic growth reflected in this level of the CFNAI-MA3 suggests limited inflationary pressure from economic activity over the coming year.
emphasis added
This graph shows the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (three month moving average) since 1967.

Chicago Fed National Activity Index Click on graph for larger image.

This suggests economic activity was close to the historical trend in June (using the three-month average).

According to the Chicago Fed:
What is the National Activity Index? The index is a weighted average of 85 indicators of national economic activity drawn from four broad categories of data: 1) production and income; 2) employment, unemployment, and hours; 3) personal consumption and housing; and 4) sales, orders, and inventories.

A zero value for the index indicates that the national economy is expanding at its historical trend rate of growth; negative values indicate below-average growth; and positive values indicate above-average growth.