FILE PHOTO: Customers drink, eat and talk at well-spaced tables on Almanac Taproom’s former-parking lot-turned-pandemic-beer-garden in Alameda, California, U.S. June 4, 2021. REUTERS/Ann Saphir/File Photo
(Reuters) – A gauge of future U.S. economic activity increased for the third consecutive month in May, suggesting the economy continued to recover from the recession caused by the novel coronavirus outbreak.
The Conference Board on Thursday said its index of leading economic indicators (LEI) rose 1.3% last month to 114.5, topping its previous peak reached in January 2020. That was in line with economists’ expectations, according to a Reuters poll.
“Strengths among the leading indicators were widespread, with initial claims for unemployment insurance making the largest positive contribution to the index; housing permits made this month’s only negative contribution,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, senior director of economic research…