Economic Activity Rebounds After January Chill
National business activity grew faster than expected for February, according to a Chicago Federal Reserve National Activity Index released (link opens as PDF) today.
Based on a weighted average of 85 different indicators, the Chicago Fed Index provides an overall picture of our nation's economy. An above-zero reading denotes economic expansion, while a negative number implies contraction.
After clocking in at a revised -0.45 for cold and stormy January, February's report puts business activity back in growth territory at 0.14. Analysts had expected a slightly more subdued 0.10 reading. From a longer-term perspective, however, the index's three-month moving average fell 0.2 points to -0.18.
While three of the index's four broader categories made gains for February, production provided the main push behind the improvement. Production-related indicators added on 0.26 to the overall index, compared to a 0.38 subtraction the month before. Manufacturing made up most of its lost ground, expanding 0.8% after a 0.9% decline in January.
Employment pulled a slight 0.02 off the index after adding 0.11 the previous month, while housing knocked off 0.16 after subtracting 0.19 in January.
The article Economic Activity Rebounds After January Chill originally appeared on Fool.com.Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.
Copyright © 1995 - 2014 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.