Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Chemical Activity Barometer increased in May

by Bill McBride on 5/24/2016 07:42:00 PM

Wednesday:
• At 7:00 AM ET, he Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) will release the results for the mortgage purchase applications index.

• At 9:00 AM, FHFA House Price Index for March 2016. This was originally a GSE only repeat sales, however there is also an expanded index.  The consensus is for a 0.5% month-to-month increase for this index.

From the ACC: Chemical Activity Barometer Accelerated for Third Consecutive Month

The Chemical Activity Barometer (CAB), a leading economic indicator created by the American Chemistry Council (ACC), expanded 1.0 percent in May following a revised 0.8 percent increase in April and 0.1 percent increase in March. All data is measured on a three-month moving average (3MMA). Accounting for adjustments, the CAB remains up 2.3 percent over this time last year, a marked deceleration of activity from one year ago when the barometer logged a 2.7 percent year-over-year gain from 2014. On an unadjusted basis the CAB jumped 0.3 percent in May, following a solid 1.7 percent gain in April.
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Applying the CAB back to 1919, it has been shown to provide a lead of two to 14 months, with an average lead of eight months at cycle peaks as determined by the National Bureau of Economic Research. The median lead was also eight months. At business cycle troughs, the CAB leads by one to seven months, with an average lead of four months. The median lead was three months. The CAB is rebased to the average lead (in months) of an average 100 in the base year (the year 2012 was used) of a reference time series. The latter is the Federal Reserve’s Industrial Production Index.
This is a leading indicator for industrial production and suggests increases in Industrial Production later this year.