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Leading Economic Index For Australia Rises

The Conference Board's leading economic index for Australia rose five-tenths of a percentage point to 155.3 (1990=100) in November 2004, the most recent month for which data are available.

The increase, although impressive, brings the annual growth rate of the leading index to about 3.5% in recent months, still below the 5% to 6% annual rate of the first half of 2004, says the New York-based business research group.

As far as GDP is concerned, "the stronger growth of the leading index in recent months suggests that economic growth should pick up in the near term, but not back up to the very strong pace in the second half of 2003," says the Conference Board.

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