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DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer dropped by 0.3%
For the week ending March 14 2015, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer dropped by 0.3 percent to 98.1. This week’s barometer was largely dragged down by weak performances in production indexes. Electric output, for instance, plummeted by a solid 14.4 percent following a 5.6 percent drop in the previous week. Lumber, steel and coal production also reported losses, albeit they were partially offset by gains in auto and truck production. As to the consumption side, chain store sales rose for two consecutive weeks; while MBA’s purchase index declined by 1.5 percent after growing by 1.9 percent last week.
On a year-over-year basis, the barometer showed a gain of 0.6 percent, which compares to an average -3.3 percent decline over the Great Recession (ended in June 2009 according to the NBER). After flat lining in 2006, and declining from 2007 through 2009, the barometer bounced back in 2010 to rise by 3.4 percent, which was the strongest increase since 1994 (+4.0 percent), but not so impressive when compared to an -8.0 percent drop in 2009. The rate of increase for the 2013 slowed to 0.7 percent following 1.5 percent in 2012.
The smoothed version of the barometer, which attempts to account for weekly volatility, fell slightly by 0.1 percent to 98.3. Its year-over-year growth rate was 0.8 percent.
Posted: March 26, 2015 Thursday 10:00 AM