NEW YORK, Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — The Conference Board Employment Trends Index™ (ETI) increased in November to 103.7, up from the revised figure of 102.42 in October. The November figure is up 6.4 percent from the same month a year ago.
Says Gad Levanon, Director of Macroeconomic Research at The Conference Board: “The Employment Trends Index posted a large increase for the second straight month, with all of its components showing gains over these two months. The better than expected growth in economic activity in recent months is likely to lead to some acceleration in job growth in the beginning of 2012. However, this improvement may be short lived, in particular as the U.S. economy slows down once again in the coming quarters.”
This month’s strength in the ETI was driven by positive contributions from seven out of the eight components. The improving indicators include The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Survey ®“Jobs Hard to Get,” Initial Claims for Unemployment Insurance, Percentage of Firms With Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now, Number of Employees Hired by the Temporary-Help Industry, Part-Time Workers for Economic Reasons, Job Openings, and Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales.
The Employment Trends Index aggregates eight labor-market indicators, each of which has proven accurate in its own area. Aggregating individual indicators into a composite index filters out so-called “noise” to show underlying trends more clearly.
Indicative of a recession, the Conference Board’s consumer confidence index dropped to 44.5 vs. last months 59.2. That represents the lowest showing of consumer sentiment since spring of 2009.
The number was heavily weighed down by a very poor showing in the forward-looking Expectations Index portion of the total score. This represents
Says Lynn Franco, Director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center: “Consumer confidence deteriorated sharply in August, as consumers grew significantly more pessimistic about the short-term outlook. The index is now at its lowest level in more than two years (April 2009, 40.8). A contributing factor may have been the debt ceiling discussions since the decline in confidence was well underway before the S&P downgrade. Consumers’ assessment of current conditions, on the other hand, posted only a modest decline as employment conditions continue to suppress confidence.”
In a scathing rebuke of the current administration’s view that things are getting better, the report also shows that only 11.8 of respondents think that business conditions are going to improve over the next six months.
NEW YORK, Aug. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI)for the U.S. increased 0.5 percent in July to 115.8 (2004 = 100), following a 0.3 percent increase in June, and a 0.7 percent increase in May. The largest positive contributions came from money supply, the interest rate spread, and average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance (inverted).
Says Ataman Ozyildirim, economist at The Conference Board: “The U.S. LEI continued to increase in July. However, with the exception of the money supply and interest rate components, other leading indicators show greater weakness – consistent with increasing concerns about the health of the economic expansion. Despite rising volatility, the leading indicators still suggest economic activity should be slowly expanding through the end of the year.”
Says Ken Goldstein, economist at The Conference Board: “The economy is slow, with little momentum, and shows no indication of acceleration. The gains in the LEI are modest, especially the nonfinancial indicators. Despite these growing risks, the economy should continue to expand at a modest pace through the fall.”
The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for the U.S. increased 0.3 percent in July to 103.3 (2004 = 100), following a 0.1 percent increase in June, and a 0.1 percent increase in May. Three of the four coincident indicators advanced over the past six months.
The Conference Board Lagging Economic Index® (LAG) increased 0.2 percent in July to 110.0 (2004 = 100), following a 0.4 percent increase in June, and a 0.4 percent increase in May.