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Business cycle indicators, including monthly GDP

SPGMI (formerly IHS Markit/Macroeconomic Consultants) estimates that monthly GDP fell by 0.5% month-on-month (annualized -6.3%!)

figure 1: Non-farm payroll employment incorporates preliminary benchmark (bold dark blue), using Bloomberg consensus implied levels as of 12/4 (blue+), civilian employment (orange), industrial production (red), excluding transfers in 2017 Personal income $ (bold green), Manufacturing and trade sales $ in 2017 (black), Consumption $ in 2017 (light blue), Monthly GDP $ in 2017 (pink), GDP, second Released (blue bar), all logs are normalized to 2021M11=0. Source: BLS via FRED, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics preliminary benchmarksFederal Reserve, BEA 2023Q3 2nd Edition, contains comprehensive revisions, S&P Global/IHS Markit (Nigerian macroeconomic consultant, IHS Markit) (12/1/2023 release) and the author's calculations.

Private employment, industrial production and monthly GDP fell in October, while non-agricultural employment and personal income (both NBER BCDC core variables) continued to rise, as did consumption.

Although monthly GDP fell by -0.5% from the previous quarter, final sales increased by 0.1% from the previous quarter. If the series more closely reflects aggregate demand, the picture looks more positive. However, SPGMI does predict a rather lackluster quarterly SAAR growth rate of 0.9% in the fourth quarter.

These are the look-back variables used by NBER's BCDC to identify business cycle turning points. Higher frequency (weekly) data released through November 25 show growth broadly trending.

figure 2: Lewis-Mertens-Stock Weekly Economic Index (blue) and Baumeister-Leiva-Leon-Sims US Weekly Economic Conditions Index plus 2% Trend (green), all annual growth rates in %.Source: Federal Reserve Bank of New York fred, WECIaccessed 12/4, and author's calculations.

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