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Economy in Brief

U.S. CASH Index Lowest Since February
by Tom Moeller July 21, 2010

The CASH Index is produced by the RBC Financial Group. It stands for Consumer Attitudes & Spending By Households and the overall series moves much like the University of Michigan's Index of Consumer Sentiment, but its components differ. During July the index fell to 47.2, the second consecutive down month since its May high. Beginning in 2002, the overall index level has a 62% correlation with the change in real GDP.

Weakness within the July CASH index was largest in the Expectations and Investment components. However, the up-trends in both series remained in place. There also was a very slight decline in the Jobs component but an uptick in the Current Conditions reading. Since inception there has been an 87% correlation between the Jobs index and the m/m change in private nonfarm payrolls.

The RBC CASH Index is available in Haver's SURVEYS database.

The Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress by Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben S. Bernanke can be found here.

National RBC CASH Index
(Jan 2002 = 100, NSA)
July June May July '09 2009 2008 2007
CASH Index 47.2 58.4 72.7 22.4 30.0 36.1 82.6
  Current Conditions 61.7 61.5 63.6 23.3 28.2 46.0 99.4
  Expectations 46.1 49.6 74.2 4.8 19.5 -12.4 34.3
  Jobs 73.3 73.7 74.2 50.5 50.9 88.7 12.2
  Investment 70.1 71.1 73.8 30.9 37.2 51.1 91.1
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