Indicators Signify Moderate Economic Growth In Early 2020

The U.S. economy’s performance slipped slightly in December, but growth is forecasted to remain steady at a modest level into 2020. The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for the U.S. declined 0.3 percent in December to 111.2, following a 0.1-percent increase in November and a 0.2-percent decline in October.

“The US LEI declined slightly in December, driven by large negative contributions from rising unemployment insurance claims and a drop in housing permits,” says Ataman Ozyildirim, senior director of economic research at The Conference Board. “The LEI has now declined in four out of the last five months. Its six-month growth rate turned slightly more negative in the final quarter of 2019, with the manufacturing indicators pointing to continued weakness in the sector. However, financial conditions and consumers’ outlook for the economy remain positive, which should support growth of about two percent through early 2020.”

The Conference Board’s Coincident Economic Index, a measure of current economic activity, increased 0.1 percent in December to 107.2 This growth follows a 0.3-percent increase in November and a 0.1-percent decline in October. Its Lagging Economic Index, an indicator representing changes that come only after the economy has begun to follow a particular trend, decreased in December, slipping 0.1 percent to 108.8. This follows a 0.4-percent increase in November and a 0.2-percent increase in October.


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