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Economy in Brief

OECD Leaders Broadly Stalled
by Tom Moeller September 13, 2004

The Index of Leading Indicators for the Major Seven OECD Countries fell slightly in July and continued the lackluster performance of the last five months. Since February the leading index is about unchanged and the index's six-month growth rate dropped to 2.9% from 7.8%.

Leaders in the United States rose 0.1% in July continuing recent months' weakened rate of gain. The six-month growth in the US leaders dropped to 4.5% versus 11.6% in January. In Japan the July leaders fell 0.1% for the third monthly decline this year and that pulled the six-month growth to 0.4% from 3.4% in January.

The leading index for the European Union also fell in July and the growth rate dropped to 2.7% from 6.2% in January. The German leaders grew at a 4.3% rate, down from 8.4%, and the French leaders decelerated to a 5.8% rate of growth versus 8.0% at the start of the year. Leaders in Italy have fallen during the last four consecutive months and growth has dropped to -2.0% from +2.1%. In the UK the leaders fell for the fourth month in the last five and the six month growth rate fell to -0.7% from 5.0s.

In Canada gains in the leaders have been scattered and growth is down to 2.5% from 7.2% in January.

Visit the OECD at this website.

OECD Main Economic Indicators July June 6-Mth Chg 2003 2002 2001
OECD Major Seven - Leading Index
(Trend Restored)
102.5 102.5 2.9% 2.6% 2.3% -3.1%
  European Union 105.5 105.5 2.7% 2.3% 3.5% -2.4%
  Japan 97.7 97.8 0.4% 1.8% 0.3% -4.5%
  United States 103.4 103.3 4.5% 3.8% 2.0% -3.3%
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