The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for Japan increased 0.3 percent in August to 97.7 (2004 = 100), following a 0.8 percent decline in July, and a 0.8 percent decline in June.
At the same time, The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for Japan, a measure of current economic activity, declined 0.2 percent in August to 94.9 (2004 = 100), following a 0.1 percent decline in July, and a 0.5 percent decline in June.
The Conference Board LEI for Japan increased for the first time this year. Its six-month change remains negative, but the weaknesses among its components have become less widespread in recent months. The slightly better performance in the LEI and its components this month suggests that the second quarter's deep contraction, due to a fiscal shock, may be short-lived. However, the economic recovery is likely to be subdued in the months ahead, with downside risks still existing.