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Leading indicators signal slowdown for major OECD economies

Paris, France -- The latest composite leading indicators (CLIs) suggest that a slowdown in economic activity lies a...


Paris, France — The latest composite leading indicators (CLIs) suggest that a slowdown in economic activity lies ahead in the OECD areas, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Only Canada, China and Russia showed slightly increased activity in March 2008 over the previous month.

The OECD total area covers the following 29 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, and United States.

March 2008 data indicate a weakening outlook for all the major seven economies (The G7 area covers Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom and United States).

The latest data for major OECD non-member economies point to a potential downturn in Brazil, China and India, while continued expansion is ahead in Russia.

The CLI for the OECD total area fell by 0.5 points in March 2008 and was 3.2 points lower than in March 2007. The CLI for the United States fell by 0.9 points in March and it was 3.6 points lower than a year ago.

The Euro area’s CLI decreased by 0.7 points in March and stood 3.3 points lower than a year ago. In March, the CLI for Japan increased by 0.4 points, but it was 4.3 points lower than a year ago. The CLI for the United Kingdom fell by 0.7 points in March 2008 and it was 2.6 points lower than a year ago.

The CLI for Canada increased 0.3 points in March but was 1.1 points lower than a year ago.

For France, the CLI decreased by 0.5 points in March and was 2.3 points lower than a year ago. The CLI for Germany fell by 0.5 points in March and was 3.1 points lower than a year ago. For Italy, the CLI decreased by 0.8 points in March and stood 4.6 points lower than a year ago.

The CLI for China was up by 0.1 points in March 2008 but stood 1.6 points lower than a year ago. The CLI for India fell by 1.3 points in February 2008 and was 1.6 points lower than in February 2007.

The CLI for Russia increased by 0.1 points in March, and its level was 3.2 points higher than a year ago. In March 2008 the CLI for Brazil dropped 1.9 points, and it was 1.4 points lower than a year ago.

For more information, visit www.oecd.org.