Chicago PMI Ends 2018 In "Good Health"

The Chicago Business Barometer, also known as the Chicago Purchasing Manager's Index, is similar to the national ISM Manufacturing indicator but at a regional level and is seen by many as an indicator of the larger US economy. It is a composite diffusion indicator, made up of production, new orders, order backlogs, employment, and supplier deliveries compiled through surveys. Values above 50.0 indicate expanding manufacturing activity.

The latest Chicago Purchasing Manager's Index, or the Chicago Business Barometer, fell to 65.4 in December from 66.4 in November, which was above the forecast 62.0.

Here is an excerpt from the press release:

“The MNI Chicago Business Barometer saw 2018 out in good health, assisted by a firm uptick in Production, cementing the best calendar quarter outturn in a year”, said Jai Lakhani, Economist at MNI Indicators.

“Encouragingly, inflationary pressures subsided for a fifth consecutive month and should this continue, it will ease the burden on firms‘ productive capacities. Still, concerns over tariffs continue to linger in the background and stir uncertainty”, he added. [Source]

Let's take a look at the Chicago PMI since its inception.

Chicago PMI

Here's a closer look at the indicator since 2000.

Let's compare the Chicago PMI with the more popular national ISM Manufacturing Index. Both indices clearly follow one another with the ISM falling slightly lower on average. Note the ISM Manufacturing indicator is through the previous month.


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