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Global Business Cycle Indicators

Australia

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Benchmark Revisions - January 2008

Press Release Archive

Released: Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) Australia declined 0.1 percent and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) increased 0.2 percent in April.

  • The Conference Board LEI for Australia declined slightly in April, with negative contributions from building approvals and rural good exports offsetting positive contributions from the sales to inventories ratio, the yield spread, money supply, gross operating surplus and share prices. The six-month growth rate of the leading economic index was 2.5 percent (about a 5.0 percent annual rate) from October 2013 to April 2014, higher than its growth of 1.1 percent (about a 2.3 percent annual rate) for the previous six months. The strengths among the leading indicators still outweigh the weaknesses, with six out of seven components advancing over the past six months.
  • The Conference Board CEI for Australia, a measure of current economic activity, increased again in April. All four of its components continued to advance over the last six months (diffusion index, six-month span equals 100.0 percent). With April’s gain, the coincident economic index grew by 1.6 percent (about a 3.3 percent annual rate) in the six-month period through April 2014 – significantly higher than the 0.2 percent (about a 0.5 percent annual rate) in the previous six months. Meanwhile, real GDP increased at a 4.5 percent annual rate in the first quarter of 2014, an improvement from 3.2 percent (annual rate) in the fourth quarter of 2013.
  • The Conference Board LEI for Australia has been on an upward trend since the middle of 2009, although its six-month growth rate has moderated in recent months. At the same time, The Conference Board CEI for Australia continues to increase and its six-month growth has improved compared to earlier this year. Taken together, the current behavior of the composite indexes suggests that economic expansion will continue in the near term.

LEADING INDICATORS. Five of the seven components in The Conference Board LEI for Australia increased in April. The positive contributors to the index — in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest — are the sales to inventories ratio*, the yield spread, money supply*, gross operating surplus* and share prices. Building approvals and rural goods exports declined.

With the 0.1 percent decrease in April, The Conference Board LEI for Australia now stands at 129.6 (2004=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.2 percent in March and increased 0.5 percent in February. During the six-month period through April, the leading economic index increased 2.5 percent, and six of the seven components increased (diffusion index, six-month span equals 85.7 percent).

COINCIDENT INDICATORS. Three of the four components in The Conference Board CEI for Australia increased in April. The increases - in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest – occurred in household gross disposable income*, industrial production*, and employed persons. Retail trade was unchanged in April.

With the increase of 0.2 percent in April, The Conference Board CEI for Australia now stands at 125.1 (2004=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.3 percent in March and increased 0.4 percent in February. During the six-month period through April, the coincident economic index increased 1.6 percent, with all four components in the series making positive contributions (diffusion index, six-month span equals 100.0 percent).

DATA AVAILABILITY. The data series used to compute The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for Australia and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for Australia reported in this release are those available “as of” 10 A.M. ET on June 17, 2014. Some series are estimated as noted below.

Series in The Conference Board LEI for Australia that are based on our estimates are sales to inventory ratio and gross operating surplus for private non-financial corporations, the implicit price index used to deflate rural goods exports and building approvals, and the CPI used to deflate money supply M3. Series in The Conference Board CEI for Australia that are based on our estimates are industrial production and household disposable income. CPI was used to deflate retail trade.

THESE DATA ARE FOR ANALYSIS PURPOSES ONLY. NOT FOR REDISTRIBUTION, PUBLISHING, DATABASING, OR PUBLIC POSTING WITHOUT EXPRESS WRITTEN PERMISSION.