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Economic Data (USA)

Friday, June 23, 2023

Leading Economic Index for May 2023

The Conference Board® released its Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for May 2023 this morning:


Index for May 2023: 106.7 (The baseline 100 score is associated with 2016 data.)


Predicted: -0.7%
  • Actual: -0.744% (-0.8 point)


  • LEI for April 2023: 107.5

  • LEI for March 2023: 108.2

  • LEI for February 2023: 109.5

  • LEI for January 2023: 110.2

  • LEI for December 2022: 110.7

  • LEI for November 2022: 111.5

  • LEI for October 2022: 112.5

  • LEI for September 2022: 113.5

  • LEI for August 2022: 116.4

  • LEI for July 2022: 116.4

  • LEI for June 2022: 117.1

  • LEI for May 2022: 117.9

  • LEI for April 2022: 118.7

  • LEI for March 2022: 119.3

  • LEI for February 2022: 119.4

  • LEI for January 2022: 118.5


The yellow-highlighted percentage is the month-to-month change for the index.  The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

The LEI is a composite of 10 of the nation's economic data releases that's put together by The Conference Board. Statistically, the components listed below have shown a significant increase or decrease before national economic upturns or downturns:

  1. The Standard + Poor's 500 Index

  2. Average weekly claims for unemployment insurance

  3. Building permits for new private housing

  4. The interest rate spread between the yield on the benchmark 10-Year Treasury Note and Federal Funds

  5. ISM® Index of New Orders

  6. Manufacturer's new orders for consumer goods or materials

  7. Manufacturers' new orders, non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft orders

  8. Average weekly manufacturing hours

  9. Average consumer expectations for business conditions

  10. Leading Credit Index™

CHART: Leading Economic Index 6-Month Growth Rate with Warning + Recession Signals - May 2023 UPDATE
CHART: Leading Economic Index
6-Month Growth Rate
with Warning + Recession Signals
May 2023 UPDATE

From Today's Report:

"...'The US LEI continued to fall in May as a result of deterioration in the gauges of consumer expectations for business conditions, ISM® New Orders Index, a negative yield spread, and worsening credit conditions,' said Justyna Zabinska-La Monica, Senior Manager, Business Cycle Indicators, at The Conference Board. 'The US Leading Index has declined in each of the last fourteen months and continues to point to weaker economic activity ahead. Rising interest rates paired with persistent inflation will continue to further dampen economic activity.

While we revised our Q2 GDP forecast from negative to slight growth, we project that the US economy will contract over the Q3 2023 to Q1 2024 period. The recession likely will be due to continued tightness in monetary policy and lower government spending.'..


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