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Economy in Brief

Chicago Fed Nat'l Activity Index: Economic Growth Near Trend
by Tom Moeller May 19, 2005

In April the National Activity Index (CFNAI) compiled by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago improved to 0.10 from a downwardly revised -0.04 in March.

The figures left the three-month moving average of the CFNAI at 0.08, its lowest since 2003. A zero value of the CFNAI indicates that the economy is expanding at its historical trend rate of growth.

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.

During the last twenty years there has been a 74% correlation between the level of the CFNAI and q/q growth in real GDP.

The latest CFNAI report is available here.

M2 and "Reigniting Inflation" from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis can be found here.

Chicago Fed April March April '04 2004 2003 2002
CFNAI 0.10 -0.04 0.47 0.39 -0.11 -0.40
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