Tracking The Economic Boom

Published Thursday, December 23, 2021 at: 10:30 PM EST

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The Leading Economic Index (LEI) for the United States rose sharply in November again.  It’s higher than it’s ever been since its inception in 1959.

The Conference Board forecasts real GDP growth to strengthen in Q4 2021 to an annualized rate of about 6.5%, before moderating to a still-healthy rate of 2.2% in Q1 2022. The November reading suggests the current economic expansion will continue into the first half of 2022, according to The Conference Board, an association for U.S. corporate giants.

The LEI has plunged before every recession in modern history except for the Covid recession, and a bear market was triggered by every recession in modern history except for the stock market crash of 1987, which makes the LEI a reliable forward-looking indicator of financial economics.

The 6.5% growth rate projected by The Conference Board’s economics team is higher than the Blue Chip Economic Indicators consensus forecast of 10 leading economists for about 6% growth in the fourth quarter of 2021.  

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The Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closed Thursday at an all-time high of 4,725.79. The index gained +0.62% for the day and a whopping +2.25% from its closing price last Friday. The index is up +71.47% from the March 23, 2020, bear market low.


The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) components: 1) average weekly hours worked, manufacturing; 2) average weekly initial unemployment claims; 3) manufacturers’ new orders – consumer goods and materials; 4) ISM index of new orders; 5) manufacturers’ new orders, nondefense capital goods; 6) building permits – new private housing units; 7) stock prices, S&P 500; 8) Leading Credit Index™; 9) interest rate spread; 10-year Treasury minus fed funds; 10) index of consumer expectations. Nothing contained herein is to be considered a solicitation, research material, an investment recommendation, or advice of any kind, and it is subject to change without notice. Any investments or strategies referenced herein do not take into account the investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs of any specific person. Product suitability must be independently determined for each individual investor. Tax advice always depends on your particular personal situation and preferences. You should consult the appropriate financial professional regarding your specific circumstances. The material represents an assessment of financial, economic and tax law at a specific point in time and is not intended to be a forecast of future events or a guarantee of future results. Forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties. Actual results, performance, or achievements may differ materially from those expressed or implied. Information is based on data gathered from what we believe are reliable sources. It is not guaranteed as to accuracy, does not purport to be complete, and is not intended to be used as a primary basis for investment decisions. This article was written by a professional financial journalist for Advisor Products and is not intended as legal or investment advice.

This article was written by a veteran financial journalist based on data compiled and analyzed by independent economist, Fritz Meyer. While these are sources we believe to be reliable, the information is not intended to be used as financial advice without consulting a professional about your personal situation.

Indices are unmanaged and not available for direct investment. Investments with higher return potential carry greater risk for loss. Past performance is not an indicator of your future results.

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