The recent numbers for the U.S. Leading Economic Index have been released, showing a sharp increase during February. What does this suggest for the rest of 2014? Doug Short analyses the results for Advisor Perspectives. The general consensus is that our economy has been held back by the recent severe winter weather. New home sales fell to a five month low in February, but consumer confidence has rebounded in March, hitting a six year high. Reuters covers the story with a look forward at what to expect from the economy as the year progresses. Investors who follow the economy closely can actually anticipate which economic reports are going to be released in advance.  We close this week with a link to the Economic Calendar.

Conference Board Leading Economic Index Increased in February– “The U.S. Leading Economic Index increased sharply in February, suggesting that any weather-related volatility will be short lived  and the economy should continue to improve into the second half of the year.” This comes from Ataman Ozyildirim,  Economist at The Conference Board, upon the release of the most recent numbers.

U.S. Consumer Confidence Hits Six-Year High– A surge in consumer confidence to a six-year high in March suggested the economy was regaining momentum after being held back by severe weather.  “Overall, consumers expect the economy to continue improving and believe it may even pick up a little steam in the months ahead,” said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board in a recent statement.

Have You Seen The Economic Calendar?–  Investors who follow the markets closely have a way of anticipating the economic news in advance.  The Yahoo Economic Calendar is a good summary of upcoming announcements of important news that affects the markets.

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John R. Day, Bill Ennis, Stephanie Davidson and Matt Heller

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