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For release: August 28, 2002
Contact: Kathy Woodbury, (215) 574-4119
The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia today released the monthly leading and economic activity indexes for Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
Philadelphia Federal Reserve Vice President and Economist Ted Crone summarized the information from the indexes:
"The economic activity indexes for Pennsylvania and Delaware indicate that economic activity in the two states was unchanged in July; New Jersey's index was up slightly. New Jersey's economy consistently performed better than the other two states during the recent recession and in the early months of the recovery. The leading indexes for all three states are signaling growth through the first quarter of 2003. Delaware's leading index turned positive in July after three consecutive negative readings, and the leading indexes for Pennsylvania and New Jersey were higher in July than in the previous month."
The indexes, compiled by the Bank since 1994, present comprehensive measures of the economies of Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. The economic activity index is a composite indicator based on nonfarm payroll employment, unemployment rate, average hours worked in manufacturing, and real wage and salary disbursements. The leading index, which is a forecast of the growth of the economic activity index, is based on the recent pattern of the activity index, as well as traditional leading indicators including housing permits, interest rates, delivery times, and initial unemployment claims.
The economic activity index is an indicator of the current economic climate, and the leading index forecasts the growth rate of the activity indexes nine months into the future.
To arrange an interview, contact Kathy Woodbury, the Bank's assistant media representative, at (215) 574-4119. August's indexes are due to be released in late September and will be made available on this web site.