Reports continue to suggest that the world is moving along just fine if you can ignore the noise.

Maybe a summertime media detox is in order here.

Case in point, in the American Midwest it's been really busy with quite a beat over expectations:

Highter Chart

And the larger view reflects the same, with both LEI and CEI Indicators - each a wide-ranging gauge of business in general - hitting new highs of late. 

Note in Dr Ed Yardeni’s chart below that both have now extended well beyond the peaks seen before the Great Recession.

Highter Chart2

Here’s a word from Dr Ed on the subject:

"The Index of Coincident Economic Indicators (CEI) rose to a new record high during June. If it continues doing so over the next year through July, that will mark the longest economic expansion on record.

“The Index of Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) tends to lead the CEI by about three to six months. The former also rose to a new high in June, suggesting that the latter has a good shot at making the history books.

“So the LEI is flashing a bright green light for the US economy. Here are two related points:

1. GDP Growth - The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow is also flashing green. The July 18 estimate shows real GDP up 4.5% q/q (saar) during Q2, and 3.1% year on year. However, the CEI year on year growth rate, which tends to closely track the comparable growth rate in real GDP, continues to mosey along around 2.0%-2.5%.

2. Yield Curve Spread - As observed before, the yield curve spread is one of the 10 components of the LEI, yet it has been getting all the attention recently. That’s because it has been falling closer to zero this year, and EVERYBODY knows that if it turns negative, a recession is inevitable.

But not so fast…

In the LEI, the yield curve component was still 109bps during June. Then again, it was down to 98bps on the Friday before last.

Keep in mind that it doesn’t weigh on the LEI until it actually turns negative. By the way, the ratio of the LEI to CEI also rose to a cyclical high during June. The ratio is essentially a de-trended version of the LEI and seems to provide a longer lead time for predicting recessions."

And That Means…

Let everyone else worry about the next 8-24 hours.

Let's focus instead on the healthy horizon which is just getting cranked up for the changes unfolding ahead.

Mike Williams
Founder and Managing Partner