Announcing the latest data for the Chicago Fed National Activity Index, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago said Thursday that December indicators point to a slight change in economic growth.
December Chicago Fed National Activity Index stood at -0.49, broadly in line with -0.51 in November, indicating that the U.S. economy continued to grow at a below-average pace for the second straight month.
The index’s three-month moving average, CFNAI-MA3, decreased to -0.33 in December from -0.14 in September.
Three of the four broad categories of indicators used to construct the index made negative contributions in December, while two improved from the previous month.
The CFNAI Diffusion Index, another three-month moving average, fell to -0.13 in December from a neutral value in November.
Production-related indicators contributed -0.43 to the CFNAI vs. -0.35 in November, while Industrial production declined 0.7% after falling 0.6% in the prior month.
The contribution from the sales, orders and inventories category moved up to -0.01 in December from -0.07 in November, while employment-related indicators contributed +0.02, up from -0.03 in the previous month.
The report is the first under the new head of the Chicago Federal Reserve, Austan Goolsbee, who assumed his duties early this month.