Germany's Leading Economic Index Is Improving

By John S. McClenahen Although the Conference Board's leading index of economic indicators for Germany was unchanged in October, the most recent month for which data are available, it has been showing improvement. The index "has improved to about a 2% to 3% annual rate," up from slight declines earlier this year, but still well below the 4% to 5% growth rate in the second half of 2003," says the New York-based business research group. The leading index for Germany now stands at 103.8 (1990=100)." The recent behavior of the leading index suggests that economic growth should pick up slightly in the near term from the third quarter's sluggish pace," says the Conference Board.

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