Business Cycle Indicators as of End-May

Consumption, personal income ex-transfers, and (for March) manufacturing and trade industry sales.

Figure 1: Nonfarm Payroll (NFP) employment from CES (bold blue), civilian employment (orange), industrial production (red), personal income excluding current transfers in Ch.2017$ (bold green), manufacturing and trade sales in Ch.2017$ (black), consumption in Ch.2017$ (light blue), and monthly GDP in Ch.2017$ (pink), GDP (blue bars), all log normalized to 2021M11=0. Source: BLS via FRED, Federal Reserve, BEA 2024Q1 second release, S&P Global Market Insights (nee Macroeconomic Advisers, IHS Markit) (5/1/2024 release), and author’s calculations.

Personal income and consumption show stabilization; consumption flat aligns with the downwardly revised GDP for Q1.


6 thoughts on “Business Cycle Indicators as of End-May

  1. Jake formerly of the LP

    The downward revisions are noteworthy to me, especially in the income/spending report, because it shows that things were merely good vs booming in Q4 2023.

    As I wrote, I would hope the Fed also saw those revisions, and cuts rates sooner than later, especially as I would think May gives us the lowest CPI print of the year. Because with an economy that’s moderating and prices only rising by 3%, why are we holding Fed Funds over 5%?

    And I also believe these high rates are keeping people locked in at their homes and restricting the housing supply, which means it’s raising home prices vs lowering them. So lowering rates becomes a win-win for that concern.

  2. pgl

    Trump warns ‘depression’ is on the horizon if Biden’s re-elected: Just ‘like in 1929’

    Former President Donald Trump warned a second Biden term could bring the country to its knees, cautioning that four more years of the current administration could usher in a depression just like the one that struck the nation in 1929. “If I don’t win, you’re going to have a depression like in 1929,” he said during an exclusive sit-down interview with “Fox & Friends Weekend” co-hosts Rachel Campos-Duffy, Will Cain and Pete Hegseth.

    I see – no Biden recession this year. No a Biden depression next year. You have to be on Fox and Friends to make such stupid comments. Sort of like how Stevie boy Koptis loves to go on this show of morons to tell us oil prices will be $200 a barrel any day now.

    Oh wait Bruce MAGA Moron told us that beef prices would be soaring even though they have been flat. Yea – this Trumpian liar found some goofball that said beef prices will rise in 2025. Yea right!

    1. Moses Herzog

      Hasn’t the “very stable” orange thing sung from this same hymnal before?? <<— for the dumb people, that's a October 2020 link

      Who got people back to work after Covid?? It was Biden who got people back to work after Covid. They want their children sitting at home again unsupervised and restaurants going out of business?? Do we have to show the illiterates the numbers for the 1,000th time??

      1. Ivan

        Yes you do have to show the facts for the 1000’th time and, No it will not make any difference. Because they know what they know and if they see data that doesn’t fit what they “know” it is simply proof that those numbers have been manipulated or made up. How do they know that – well because they are in conflict with what they heard on Faux news and therefore know to be the truth. You can’t make this shit up but you can get dizzy thinking about it.


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