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Economy in Brief

Chicago Fed National Activity Index Negative, Again
by Tom Moeller August 20, 2007

The National Activity Index (CFNAI) from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago fell back in July to -0.10 after a brief move into positive territory during the prior month.

The Chicago Fed indicated that the production & income category made a positive contribution to the index. They were offset by negative contributions in the employment, the consumption and housing category. The sales, orders, and inventories category made a neutral contribution in July.

The three-month moving average of the CFNAI also fell back into negative territory where it has been now for eleven months.

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.

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.

Chicago Fed July June July '06 2006 2005 2004
CFNAI -0.10 0.06 0.02 0.02 0.28 0.32
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