The numbers:The Chicago Fed’s national activity index rose to a record high of 4.11 in June from the prior record of 3.5 hit in the prior month. The index has been extremely volatile – falling to a record-low negative 17.89 in April. The index’s three-month moving average, which tries to smooth this volatility, moved up to negative 3.49 in June from a negative 6.36 in the prior month.
What happened: The Chicago Fed index is a weighted average of 85 economic indicators. Fifty-four indicators made positive contributions in June while 31 were negative.
A zero value for the index indicates the national economy is expanding at its historic trend rate of growth.