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DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer unch%
For the week ending March 7 2015, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer remained at 98.5 as gains in consumption indexes were completely cancelled out by losses in production indexes. On one hand, chain store sales rose by 1.3 percent due to improvements in demand on department, drug, and electronics stores. In the same line, MBA’s purchase index picked up by 1.9 percent following 0.2 percent drop in the prior week. However, on the other hand, all production indexes except lumber production reported losses, especially auto and truck production, which dropped by 7.0 and 4.5 percent, respectively.
On a year-over-year basis, the barometer showed a gain of 1.1 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, remained at 98.5. Its year-over-year growth rate was 1.1 percent.
Posted: March 19, 2015 Thursday 10:00 AM