Australia's Leading Economic Index Increases For Seventh Month

The Conference Board's index of leading economic indicators for Australia increased two-tenths of a percentage point in August, the most recent month for which data are available and the seventh consecutive month of increase.

The leading index for Australia, which now stands at 159.8 (1990=100), "has been growing at about a 5% annual rate in recent months, well above the 1% to 2% range through the first quarter of 2005," notes the Conference Board, a New York-based business research group.

Australia's inflation-adjusted GDP growth has also picked up -- to a 5.2% annual rate during this year's second quarter -- and "the improvement in the leading index since the beginning of 2005 suggests that economic growth is likely to continue in the near term," says the Conference Board.

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