The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S., a gauge of economic expectations, increased 0.6% in April to 123.9 (2010 = 100), following no change in March, and a 0.1% increase in February.

"The U.S. LEI picked up sharply in April, with all components except consumer expectations contributing to the rebound from an essentially flat first quarter," said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research at The Conference Board. "Despite a slow start in 2016, labor market and financial indicators, and housing permits all point to a moderate growth trend continuing in 2016."

The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for the U.S. increased 0.3% in April to 113.6 (2010=100), following no change in March, and a 0.2% increase in February.

The Conference Board Lagging Economic Index® (LAG) for the U.S. increased 0.3% in April to 121.5 (2010 = 100), following a 0.5 percent increase in March, and a 0.4% increase in February.

The index takes into account the following:

  • Average weekly hours, manufacturing.
  • Average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance.
  • Manufacturers' new orders, consumer goods and materials.
  • ISM® Index of New Orders.
  • Manufacturers' new orders, nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft orders.
  • Building permits, new private housing units.
  • Stock prices, 500 common stocks.
  • Leading Credit Index™.
  • Interest rate spread, 10-year Treasury bonds less federal funds.
  • Average consumer expectations for business conditions.