U.S. February Primary Metals Leading Index: Summary

The U.S. primary metals leading index rose in February, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

The index, a gauge of industry activity over the next eight months, rose 0.3 percent following a 0.9 percent gain in January.

==============================================================================
                         Feb.    Jan.    Dec.    Nov.    Oct.   Sept.    Aug.
                         2012    2012    2011    2011    2011    2011    2011
==============================================================================
                        --------------------Primary Metals-------------------
Leading Index           161.4   160.9   159.5   158.8   156.6   156.3   158.4
 MOM%                    0.3%    0.9%    0.4%    1.4%    0.2%   -1.3%   -0.3%
 YOY%                    3.5%    3.3%    2.6%    4.0%    5.1%    6.2%    8.9%
 Growth Rate             4.3%    4.2%    3.0%    2.9%    1.0%    1.6%    5.5%
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coincident Index          n/a   111.3   111.5   109.0   107.1   105.6   104.6
 MOM%                     n/a   -0.2%    2.3%    1.8%    1.4%    1.0%   -0.2%
 YOY%                     n/a   12.2%   12.9%   12.5%   12.4%   10.7%   10.2%
 Growth Rate              n/a   12.2%   14.5%   11.7%   10.0%    8.8%    8.6%
==============================================================================
                         Feb.    Jan.    Dec.    Nov.    Oct.   Sept.    Aug.
                         2012    2012    2011    2011    2011    2011    2011
==============================================================================
Leading Price Index       n/a   106.4   106.7   106.0   105.9   104.8   106.5
 MOM%                     n/a   -0.3%    0.7%    0.1%    1.0%   -1.6%   -1.3%
 YOY%                     n/a   -2.4%   -1.6%   -1.9%   -1.9%   -2.2%   -0.6%
 Growth Rate            -3.7%   -7.4%  -28.1%  -31.4%  -24.0%  -35.5%    3.6%
==============================================================================
                         Jan.    Dec.    Nov.    Oct.   Sept.    Aug.    July
                         2012    2011    2011    2011    2011    2011    2011
==============================================================================
                       --------------------Steel Industry-------------------
Leading Index           112.2   111.4   111.1   110.2   110.0   110.7   110.9
 MOM%                    0.7%    0.3%    0.8%    0.2%   -0.6%   -0.2%    1.5%
 YOY%                   -0.4%   -1.4%   -0.6%    1.7%    2.5%    4.2%    4.6%
 Growth Rate             3.1%    1.9%    1.9%    0.7%    1.1%    2.9%    3.8%
Coincident Index        116.4   116.9   115.1   113.1   111.8   111.6   111.1
 MOM%                   -0.4%    1.6%    1.8%    1.2%    0.2%    0.5%   -0.1%
 YOY%                   14.0%   14.6%   14.8%   16.4%   14.9%   15.8%   16.1%
 Growth Rate             7.7%    9.7%    7.7%    5.4%    4.1%    4.5%    4.8%
==============================================================================
                         Jan.    Dec.    Nov.    Oct.   Sept.    Aug.    July
                         2012    2011    2011    2011    2011    2011    2011
==============================================================================
                        -------------------Copper Industry-------------------
Leading Index           122.7   119.2   117.4   118.2   114.0   118.0   119.9
 MOM%                    2.9%    1.5%   -0.7%    3.7%   -3.4%   -1.6%   -0.3%
 YOY%                    3.4%   -1.7%   -1.3%   -0.7%   -3.1%    0.2%    2.1%
 Growth Rate             5.8%    0.1%   -2.8%   -1.8%   -8.6%   -2.5%    0.7%
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coincident Index        107.5   106.3   105.8   107.6   106.2   106.7   104.7
 MOM%                    1.1%    0.5%   -1.7%    1.3%   -0.5%    1.9%    2.0%
 YOY%                    9.6%    7.6%    5.8%    7.9%    8.9%    6.3%    5.9%
 Growth Rate             7.0%    6.1%    6.0%   10.7%    9.6%   11.7%    8.7%
==============================================================================
NOTE: The leading index for primary metals tends to turn
eight months before the coincident indicator. For copper 
and steel it tends to be seven months. The leading index
of metal prices tends to indicate price changes eight months
in advance. The growth rate is a six-month smoothed growth
rate at a compound annual rate.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Rose in Washington at srose31@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alex Tanzi at atanzi@bloomberg.net

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