The Big Four: Industrial Production Up 1.1% in April

Note: This commentary has been updated to incorporate the April data for Industrial Production.

Official recession calls are the responsibility of the NBER Business Cycle Dating Committee, which is understandably vague about the specific indicators on which they base their decisions. This committee statement is about as close as they get to identifying their method.

There is, however, a general belief that there are four big indicators that the committee weighs heavily in their cycle identification process. They are:

The Latest Indicator Data

This morning's report on Industrial Production for April shows a 1.08% increase month-over-month, which was better than the consensus of 0.5%. The year-over-year change is at 6.5%, up from last month's YoY increase. Annual revisions were made.