The following is an update of various indicators that are supposed to predict and/or depict economic activity. These indicators have been discussed in previous blog posts:
The March 2021 Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) updated as of March 22, 2021:
The CFNAI, with a current reading of -1.09:
source: Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Chicago Fed National Activity Index [CFNAI], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, March 22, 2021;
The CFNAI-MA3, with a current reading of -.02:
source: Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Chicago Fed National Activity Index: Three Month Moving Average [CFNAIMA3], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, March 22, 2021;
As of March 19, 2021 (incorporating data through March 12, 2021) the WLI was at 153.4 and the WLI, Gr. was at 25.6%.
A chart of the WLI,Gr., from the Advisor Perspectives’ ECRI update post of March 19, 2021:
The ADS Index, from 11-1-2019 through 3-13-21:
The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI), Coincident Economic Index (CEI), and Lagging Economic Index (LAG):
As per the March 18, 2021 Conference Board press release, titled “The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for the U.S. Increased in February” the LEI was at 110.5, the CEI was at 103.0, and the LAG was 104.5 in February.
An excerpt from the release:
“The U.S. LEI continued rising in February, suggesting economic growth should continue well into this year,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, Senior Director of Economic Research at The Conference Board. “Indeed, the acceleration of the vaccination campaign and a new round of large fiscal supports are not yet fully reflected in the LEI. With those developments, The Conference Board now expects the pace of growth to improve even further this year, with the U.S. economy expanding by 5.5 percent in 2021.”
“Despite widespread improvements among the leading indicators, some measures—including weekly hours in manufacturing, permits for residential housing, and consumers’ outlook for business and economic conditions—showed signs of weakness. Bad weather and assorted supply-chain disruptions may have impacted these particular leading indicators in February, and the effects may prove transitory.”
I post various indicators and indices because I believe they should be carefully monitored. However, as those familiar with this site are aware, I do not necessarily agree with what they depict or imply.
The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation
SPX at 3930.06 as this post is written