The Conference Board said that its index of leading economic indicators, which forecasts activity in the next three to six months, rose 1.2%, in May. The group also said that activity in the six-month period through May also rose 1.2%.
"The recession is losing steam," said Conference Board economist Ken Goldstein. "If these trends continue, expect a slow recovery beginning before the end of the year."
Seven of the Conference Board index's 10 components grew in May, including money supply, building permits, consumer expectations, stock prices, and vendors' deliveries of supplies to companies.
However, employment factors — claims for jobless aid and average weekly manufacturing hours were down, as was the level of manufacturers' orders for consumer goods.
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