Business Cycle Indicators - Tuesday, May 4

Monthly GDP figures were released by IHS-Markit yesterday, showing a rebound in March. In the context of key macro indicators followed by the NBER Business Cycle Dating Committee:

Figure 1: Nonfarm payroll employment from March release (dark blue), Bloomberg consensus as of 4/30 for April nonfarm payroll employment (light blue +), industrial production (red), personal income excluding transfers in Ch.2012$ (green), manufacturing and trade sales in Ch.2012$ (black), consumption in Ch.2012$ (light blue), and monthly GDP in Ch.2012$ (pink), all log normalized to 2020M02=0. Source: BLS, Federal Reserve, BEA, via FRED, IHS Markit (nee Macroeconomic Advisers) (5/32021 release), NBER, and author’s calculations.

The monthly GDP is only slightly below peak levels recorded in 2020M02. For a comparison against the official (advance) figure (discussed by Jim last week) and the current IHS-Markit (formerly Macroeconomic Advisers) nowcast, see the below figure.

Figure 2: GDP from advance release (blue bar), IHS-Markit monthly GDP (black line), and IHS-Markit nowcast of 5/4 (brown bar). Source: BEA 2021Q1 advance release, IHS-Markit.

Disclosure: None.

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