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U.S. Leading Economic Index Rises Less Than Expected In April

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A reading on leading U.S. economic indicators rose by slightly less than expected in the month of April, according to a report released by the Conference Board on Friday.

The Conference Board said its leading economic index edged up by 0.2 percent in April after climbing by a revised 0.3 percent in March.

Economists had expected the index to rise by 0.3 percent compared to the 0.4 percent increase originally reported for the previous month.

"Stock prices, financial conditions, and consumers' outlook on the economy buoyed the US LEI, although the manufacturing sector showed continuing weakness," said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Economic Research at the Conference Board.

"The Conference Board expects economic growth to moderate toward 2 percent by year end," he added. "The current expansion will enter its 11th year in July, becoming the longest expansion in US history."

The report said the coincident economic index inched up by 0.1 percent for the second consecutive month, while the lagging economic index dipped by 0.1 percent in April after rising by 0.2 percent in March.

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