On the heels of ‘hard’ data crashing (retail sales, industrial production, and employment) and ‘soft’ data seeing all hope evaporating with regional Fed surveys collapsing at record pace, it is not surprising that The Fed’s National Activity Index has also suddenly imploded.
Regional Fed Surveys have crashed in the last month – after making cyclical highs on the confusing surge in supply chain delivery times…
And that combined with the biggest disappointments in US macro data on record, has sent The Chicago Fed’s National Activity Index careening towards its deepest recession since the 70s…
All four broad categories of indicators used to construct the index made negative contributions in March, and three of the four categories decreased from February.
18 of the 85 monthly individual indicators made positive contributions
65 of the 85 monthly individual indicators made negative contributions
The drop was led by weaker production (-2.72) and employment indicators (-1.23) that highlight the severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic… and this is before 80% of the nation was locked down in April!