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Canada MLI Leading Indicator Posts 5th Monthly Gain in December

Canada’s MLI Leading Economic Indicator recorded a fifth straight gain in December, as Canadians benefited from rising stock prices and a U.S. rebound.

The index, published by the Ottawa-based Macdonald-Laurier Institute, rose 0.2 percent in December, the same gain as in November. Housing was the only component recording a drop during the month, registering a 1.9 percent decline, the institute said in a statement.

“The gradual improvement in the leading index, from no growth in July to diffuse gains by year-end, points to a pick-up in economic growth as 2013 unfolds,” the institute said in a statement.

Statistics Canada stopped publishing its composite leading economic indicator last year as part of government spending-reduction efforts, with the last reading, for April, being published May 23. The MLI began to publish its own index in October.

The increase in December was led by a 1.3 percent gain in the country’s benchmark stock index, gains in U.S. leading indicators and a narrowing interest-rate gap between public and private debt.

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