The Chicago Fed national activity index for March increased to negative 2.96 from a revised negative 2.82 reading in February, originally reported as negative 2.83.
Meanwhile, the three-month moving average, or CFNAI-MA3, improved to negative 3.27 in March from February’s revised negative 3.57 reading, initially reported as negative 3.48, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago reported yesterday.
In March 2008, the index was negative 1.14 and the CFNAI-MA3 was negative 1.01.
The negative reading for the CFNAI-MA3 indicates national economic growth was well below its historical trend and suggests little inflationary pressure from economic activity in the coming year.
The production and income category of indicators contributed negative 0.93 to the index — compared to a contribution of negative 0.78 in in February — while employment-related indicators contributed negative 1.27 after providing a negative 1.29 in February, the Fed said.
Consumption and housing-related data contributed negative 0.60 in March after contributing negative 0.60 the previous month, while sales, orders, and inventories contributed negative 0.16, after a negative 0.15 contribution in February.