Friday, June 18, 2010

Leading Economic Indicators... "Man Made" Strength

Back from a week and a half cross-country tour, thus my excuse for the day late detail of the leading economic indicators. Marketwatch details:

Slower economic growth is expected for the rest of the year, with the index of leading economic indicators rising 0.4% in May, following no growth in April, the Conference Board reported Thursday.

Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected the index to gain 0.7%. While strength among the indicators has remained widespread in recent months, the six-month change in the index has slowed down to 3.9% through May, less than 5.2% for the prior six months.

"Overall, there is no question the underlying rate of increase in the index has slowed in the past couple of months, but it has not rolled over and it remains consistent with continued expansion, albeit at a slower pace," wrote Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. Economist with High Frequency Economics, in a research note.
Take note of the details below. The drivers of the positive LEI print were due to the easy money policy (interest rate spread and money supply), rather than underlying economic growth.