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US economic growth could slow to 2% this year, leading index suggests

January 24 2019

US economic growth may slow this year, according to The Conference Board’s US Leading Economic Index released today. Data pointed to an easing of growth later this year despite not yet reflecting results of the ongoing government shutdown.

“The US [Leading Economic Index] declined slightly in December and the recent moderation in the LEI suggests that the US economic growth rate may slow down this year,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, director of economic research at The Conference Board. “While the effects of the government shutdown are not yet reflected here, the LEI suggests that the economy could decelerate towards 2% growth by the end of 2019.”

December’s index reading edged down 0.1% to 111.7 (2016 = 100). That follows a 0.2% increase in November, and a 0.3% decline in October.

Some data was not available due to the government shutdown. As a result, The Conference Board forecasted some series in order to publish a preliminary Leading Economic Index. The Conference Board also postponed its annual benchmark revision of the composite indicators until all underlying data are available.

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