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Economic Report: Chicago Fed’s national economic activity index improves to 12-month high

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A worker builds cars on the assembly line at Ford’s Chicago Assembly plant.

One measure of national economic activity recovered mid-summer as production industries ramped up their output, but the three-month average of the indicator shows an economy still churning below its potential, the Chicago Federal Reserve said Monday.

Led by improvements in production-related indicators, the Chicago Fed national activity index rose to +0.27 in July from +0.05 in June. That’s a 12-month high.

Three of the four broad categories in the index increased from June, and three of the four categories made positive contributions to the index in July.

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