Economic Surprise Index Tips Negative For The First Time In A Year

While the overall trend of economic data has been for further improvement, things have slowed recently relative to expectations. In the charts below, we show the charts of the Citi Economic Surprise indices for the US, Emerging Markets, the Eurozone, and the entire world. Broadly speaking, positive readings indicate that economic data is coming in better than forecasts while negative readings indicate the opposite. Every region of the globe has pulled back over the past couple of months but for the most part, current readings remain at the high end of their historical ranges. In fact, the indices for Emerging Markets, Eurozone, and the whole globe all sit in the top 3% of all readings in their histories. The one place that is not the case is the US. Since last summer, the surprise index has been trending lower off of record levels, and just yesterday, it hit it tipped negative for the first time since June 2nd of last year.

(Click on image to enlarge)

Lasting 248 trading days, this was the longest streak of consecutive positive readings in the index’s history dating back to 2003. The only other streak that lasted nearly as long was a 189-day long one which came to an end in June 2018.  

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