A brief counterpoint to yesterday's back-to-flint euro housing vision. The OECD composite leading indicators, despite the bad press these get in some quarters, belie the prevailing economic melancholy (a bit).

The latest numbers (paradoxically for leading indicators, from March) look like this:

Exhibit 1: OECD composite leading indicators, 2005 to 2009

French, Spaniards and Brits may guffaw. But, considered together with the OECD's business confidence data below, the overall pictured seems less gloomy:

Exhibit 2: OECD business confidence indicators, 2005 to 2009

Still, it is irrational to be sanguine when the monthly leading indicators for Germany and the United States continue to fall with increasing pace (what inflexion point?). Indeed, the US picture (SPX data through May included) looks like this:

Exhibit 3: OECD composite leading indicators for the USA

Nevertheless, equities called the turn in April and such anticipation was comforted by last week's release of slightly more timely US Conference Board leading indicator data:

Vast fiscal stimuli and free money will have its day.

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  1. Anonymous // 5/29/2009 01:56:00 PM

    What I've seen (on SAFER for example), not only are asking prices down, but the number of props offered is up 15 to 20%. Granted it's a special market for a "longere a restaurer" with 5 or 10ha pasturescrubequestrian land and it's the median that's important. But such anecdotes are important in building a true sense of the market (in france)/

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