In the December 2014 Investment Conditions report, I labeled Economic and Central Bank trends as GREEN, suggesting that global economic and central bank trends were tailwinds for stocks.
The primary measure I use to determine global economic trends are Purchaser Manager Indices (PMIs), which are monthly surveys of businesses conducted by Markit and other providers.
Generally, a reading above 50 suggests an economy is expanding while a reading below 50 suggests an economy is contracting.
I discuss PMI’s in more detail in Episode 7 of Money For the Rest of Us.
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