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Robert Hughes

The Broad Economy Showed Strength in April Though Housing Weakened

The Chicago Fed’s National Activity Index, a weighted average of 85 economic indicators, rose to 0.49 in April following a 0.07 reading in March. For this index, zero represents trend growth in the economy with positive numbers suggesting above-trend growth and negative numbers implying below-trend growth. Using a six-month moving average to smooth out the monthly volatility, the index registered 0.14 in April, the highest since December 2014 and well above the −0.24 result in May and August 2016.

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