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Economy in Brief

Chicago Fed Nat'l Activity Index Up
by Tom Moeller May 24, 2004

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) improved in April to 0.64 from 0.23 in March. The latest was the highest reading since last November.

The three-month moving average of the CFNAI also improved to 0.45, the highest level since January.

A zero value of the CFNAI indicates that the economy is expanding at its historical trend rate of growth.

During the last twenty years there has been a 75% correlation between the level of the CFNAI and q/q growth in real GDP.

The CFNAI is a weighted average of 85 indicators of economic activity. The indicators reflect activity in the following categories: production and income, the labor market, personal consumption and housing, manufacturing and trade sales, and inventories & orders.

The latest release of the Chicago Fed's National Activity Index is available here.

Last week's speech by Federal Reserve Board Governor Ben S. Bernanke on Gradualism is available here.

Chicago Fed April Mar April '03 2003 2002 2001
CFNAI 0.64 0.23 -1.18 -0.10 -0.40 -1.18
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