• News
  • SAN DIEGO
  • Finance

Measure of future US growth up 0.2 pct in January

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A measure of the U.S. economy's future direction edged up in January from December, suggesting slow growth will continue in the coming months.

The Conference Board says its index of leading indicators rose 0.2 percent in January to 94.1, the second straight increase after a gain of 0.5 percent in December. In November, the index was unchanged. The gauge is designed to anticipate economic conditions three to six months out.

Rising stock prices, falling applications for unemployment benefits and a gain in housing permits drove the index higher. A fall in consumer expectations about the economy and declining new orders for factory goods limited the gain.

“The indicators point to an underlying economy that remains relatively sound but sluggish,” Ken Goldstein, a Conference Board economist, said. “Credit use has picked up, driven in part by relatively strong demand for auto loans.”

Six of the 10 indicators that make up the index were positive in January. The index is derived from data that for the most part have already been reported individually.

Housing is the “biggest positive factor,” Goldstein said. Housing permits rose in January to their highest level since mid-2008. And sales of previously occupied homes rose to the second-highest level in three years, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday.

The Labor Department said Thursday that unemployment claims have increased from the five-year lows they reached in January. But they remain consistent with modest improvement in the job market.

Leave Your Comment

Comments are moderated by SDDT, in accordance with the SDDT Comment Policy, and may not appear on this commentary until they have been reviewed and deemed appropriate for posting. Also, due to the volume of comments we receive, not all comments will be posted.

SDDT Comment Policy: SDDT encourages you to add a comment to this discussion. You may not post any unlawful, threatening, defamatory, obscene, pornographic or other material that would violate the law. All comments should be relevant to the topic and remain respectful of other authors and commenters. You are solely responsible for your own comments, the consequences of posting those comments, and the consequences of any reliance by you on the comments of others. By submitting your comment, you hereby give SDDT the right, but not the obligation, to post, air, edit, exhibit, telecast, cablecast, webcast, re-use, publish, reproduce, use, license, print, distribute or otherwise use your comment(s) and accompanying personal identifying and other information you provide via all forms of media now known or hereafter devised, worldwide, in perpetuity. SDDT Privacy Statement.

User Response
0 UserComments

Leave Your Comment

Comments are moderated by SDDT, in accordance with the SDDT Comment Policy, and may not appear on this commentary until they have been reviewed and deemed appropriate for posting. Also, due to the volume of comments we receive, not all comments will be posted.

SDDT Comment Policy: SDDT encourages you to add a comment to this discussion. You may not post any unlawful, threatening, defamatory, obscene, pornographic or other material that would violate the law. All comments should be relevant to the topic and remain respectful of other authors and commenters. You are solely responsible for your own comments, the consequences of posting those comments, and the consequences of any reliance by you on the comments of others. By submitting your comment, you hereby give SDDT the right, but not the obligation, to post, air, edit, exhibit, telecast, cablecast, webcast, re-use, publish, reproduce, use, license, print, distribute or otherwise use your comment(s) and accompanying personal identifying and other information you provide via all forms of media now known or hereafter devised, worldwide, in perpetuity. SDDT Privacy Statement.