Weekly Leading Index Edges Up

A leading index of the U.S. economy inched higher in the latest week..., a report showed on Friday.

The Economic Cycle Research Institute, an independent forecasting group, said its weekly leading index (WLI) crawled up to 131.8 in the week ended Oct. 1 compared with 131.4 in the previous week.

The index's annualized growth rate, which smoothes out weekly fluctuations, fell by -0.6 percent from a revised -0.3 percent in the prior week.

"Today's employment report showing job growth of about 100,000 a month underscores what the weekly leading index has been telling us since the spring," said Lakshman Achuthan, Managing Director of ECRI.

"The throttling back in growth this summer was no soft patch, but rather a cyclical downturn in the growth rate of the economy that will continue through early 2005," Achuthan added.