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Conference Board Leading Economic Index Increases 0.5 percent in October

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) rose 0.5 percent in October to 111.3, following 0.5 percent growth in September and a 0.1 percent increase in August.

"The LEI remains on an upward trend, suggesting the modest economic expansion will continue in the near term. The LEI's growth has been slowing this year, but gains in the financial components helped its pickup in October," said Conference Board Economist Ataman Ozyildirim.

"The economy is slow, but latest data on the U.S. LEI suggest that change may be around the corner. Expect modest holiday sales, driven by steep discounting. But following a post-holiday lull, the indicators are suggesting a mild pickup this spring," said Conference Board Economist Ken Goldstein.

The LEI considers the following 10 components: Average weekly manufacturing hours; average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance; manufacturers' new orders, consumer goods, and materials; index of supplier deliveries and vendor performance; manufacturers' new orders of nondefense capital goods; building permits for new, private housing units; stock prices of 500 common stocks; money supply; interest rate spread of 10-year Treasury bonds less federal funds; and index of consumer expectations.

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