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Economy in Brief

Chicago Fed Nat'l Activity Index Quite Negative
by Tom Moeller February 20, 2007

The National Activity Index (CFNAI) from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in January reversed all of its upwardly revised December improvement. The decline to -0.74 was to the lowest level since September 2005.

The three-month moving average of the CFNAI also fell sharply to -0.29 and it was the fifth straight month in negative territory.

A zero value of the CFNAI indicates that the economy is expanding at its historical trend rate of growth and during the last twenty years there has been a 68% correlation between the level of the CFNAI and q/q growth in real GDP.

All of the CFNAI components contributed to the January decline including production, employment, consumption and housing.

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 complete CFNAI report is available here.

Michigan Labor Market--Still Awaiting Recovery from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago can be found here.

Chicago Fed January December January '06 2006 2005 2004
CFNAI -0.74 0.36 0.48 0.02 0.25 0.31
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