The Chicago Business Barometer, also known as the Chicago Purchasing Manager's Index, is similar to the national ISM Manufacturing indicator but at a regional level and is seen by many as an indicator of the larger US economy. It is a composite diffusion indicator, made up of production, new orders, order backlogs, employment, and supplier deliveries compiled through surveys. Values above 50.0 indicate expanding manufacturing activity.

The latest Chicago Purchasing Manager's Index, or the Chicago Business Barometer, rose in May to a value of 62.7 from 57.6 in April. forecast 58.2.

Here is an excerpt from the press release:

“It had been a somewhat sluggish start to the year, perhaps unsurprising after the stellar end to 2017, but the MNI Chicago Business Barometer found a higher gear in May. Although broad based, the rise was largely thanks to a rebound in demand and back-to-back growth in output,” said Jamie Satchi, Economist at MNI Indicators.

“The result was, however, assisted by the intensification of supply side constraints, with order backlogs surging and lead times on key materials up sharply,” he added. [Source]

Let's take a look at the Chicago PMI since its inception.

Chicago PMI

Here's a closer look at the indicator since 2000.