Thursday, June 18, 2009

Stat of the Day: Philly Fed Index Outlook Surges

As this economy has seen in many other reports, the outlook for the Philly Fed Index surged to 15 year highs. The last time this Index saw these same levels for the 6 month outlook was at the end of the 2003 recession. The current activity was also one of the highest seen in the last 19 months. And many a analyst has claimed that 'green shoots' are becoming 'yellow weeds' well the outlook data just doesn't support that theory.

  • Broad indicators of future activity showed significant improvement this month. The future general activity index remained positive for the sixth consecutive month and increased markedly from 47.5 in May to 60.1, its highest reading since September 2003
  • The survey's broadest measure of manufacturing conditions, the diffusion index of current activity, increased from -22.6 in May to -2.2 this month, its highest reading since September 2008 when the index was positive for one month (the index has been negative for 18 of the past 19 months, a span that corresponds to the current recession;
  • Summary: According to respondents to the June survey, declines in the region's manufacturing sector diminished significantly this month. Indicators for general activity, new orders, and shipments are suggesting steadier levels of activity, in contrast with the series of continuous large declines suggested in previous surveys. Indicative of overall weakness, however, firms still reported declines in employment and the prices of manufactured products. A growing number of firms expect conditions to improve over the next six months, and for the second consecutive month, more firms expect to expand employment over the next six months.

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