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Mid-Week Update - 2012-02-22
Economic activity continued to build in January, according
to the latest reading of the Chicago Fed National Activity Index. The CFNAI , a weighted average of 85 economic
data points, lost 32-basis points but remained above a reading of zero for the
second consecutive month. Per the
Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s press release, a reading above zero “indicate
above-average” economic growth. The
three-month moving average, which smoothes out some of the data series
volatility, gained eight-basis points to +0.14.
Fifty of the 85 index components made a positive contribution to the headline
index, with 48 index components showing month-to-month improvement. The biggest positive contributor: the suddenly improving labor market.
This week features several housing reports; including
January existing home sales later today, the December reading of the FHFA House
Price Index on Thursday and January new home sales on Friday. Thursday also
brings January mass layoffs data while Friday gives us the final February reading
of the University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers. Read about this week's data releases in next
Monday’s issue of AFP EconWatch.