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In January of each year, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia revises historical data for the Business Outlook Survey after calculating new seasonal adjustment factors. Because survey responses are characterized by seasonal patterns, new seasonal factors are calculated annually based on the addition of a complete year of data. While this year's revisions altered levels of the indexes for certain months, the pattern of change in most series was not significantly affected. The current general activity index remained negative for the first seven months in 2009. Although the index was originally positive in August, it was revised down from 4.2 to zero (see Chart). The largest revisions occurred in the future general activity index at the end of the year. The revisions increased the future general activity index in December 2009 from 24.4 to 35.9; however, the general pattern of a moderation in expectations over the second half of 2009 remained (see Chart).
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