2/26: MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY

National Activity Index shows slower growth in January

Led by declines in production-related indicators, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) fell to -0.43 in January from +0.05 in December.  The index’s three-month moving average, CFNAI-MA3, decreased to a neutral reading in January from +0.16 in December.



December durable goods orders rose 1.2 percent, mostly due to surge in aircraft demand

Orders for durable goods posted a 1.2 percent advance in December, but much of the strength came from a surge in demand for commercial aircraft.  Without transportation, new orders rose 0.1 percent.



Initial unemployment claims dip sharply in weekly update

Initial unemployment claims were 216,000, a decrease of 23,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 239,000. The 4-week moving average was 235,750, an increase of 4,000 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 231,750. This is the highest level for this average since January 20, 2018 when it was 237,500.