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Global Business Cycle Indicators

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Benchmark Revisions - January 2008

Press Release Archive

Released: Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for Australia increased 0.4 percent and The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) increased 0.3 percent in December.

  • The Conference Board LEI for Australia increased in December, with rural goods exports making the largest positive contribution. Between June and December 2014, the leading economic index declined 0.4 percent (about a −0.8 percent annual rate), slightly better than the 0.7 percent decline (about a −1.3 percent annual rate) in the previous six months. Additionally, the strengths among the leading indicators have become more widespread than the weaknesses in recent months.
  • The Conference Board CEI for Australia, a measure of current economic activity, also increased in December. The coincident economic index grew 1.5 percent (about a 3.0 percent annual rate) in the second half of 2014, up from its increase of 1.0 percent (about a 2.1 percent annual rate) over the first half of last year. Meanwhile, real GDP expanded by 1.4 percent (annual rate) in the third quarter of 2014, down from 2.0 percent (annual rate) in the second quarter.
  • The Conference Board LEI for Australia increased in December, after having declined in three out of the previous four months. As a result, its six-month growth rate still remains in negative territory, but the rate of decline has eased in recent months. Meanwhile, the CEI for Australia continues to moderately improve, and its six-month growth rate has picked up somewhat compared to the first half of 2014. Taken together, the recent behavior of the composite indexes suggests that the economic expansion should continue in the near term, but the pace is unlikely to pick up considerably over the next few months.

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

With the 0.4 percent increase in December, The Conference Board LEI for Australia now stands at 103.2 (2010=100). Based on revised data, this index remained unchanged in November and declined 0.1 percent in October. During the six-month period through December, the leading economic index decreased 0.4 percent, and four of the seven components increased (diffusion index, six-month span equals 57.1 percent).

COINCIDENT INDICATORS. All four components that make up The Conference Board CEI for Australia increased in December. The increases – in order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest – occurred in employed persons, household gross disposable income*, retail trade and industrial production*.

With the increase of 0.3 percent in December, The Conference Board CEI for Australia now stands at 107.6 (2010=100). Based on revised data, this index increased 0.5 percent in November and increased 0.3 percent in October. During the six-month period through December, the coincident economic index increased 1.5 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 February 17, 2015. 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.