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During periods of “low visibility,” confusion reigns: for every indication of one trend, there seems to be a countertrend. The key is to glean from the collective wisdom of reliable leading indicators a clear signal that the economy is headed for a turn.

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U.S. FIG Eases a Bit


Inflationary pressures in the U.S. economy eased in March.

But despite the tepid nature of the U.S. economic recovery, inflation remains on an upward slope that began over one year ago, the data suggest.

The Economic Cycle Research Institute's Future Inflation Gauge, which is designed to anticipate cyclical swings in the rate of inflation, fell to 120.8 last month from a revised 121.8 in February, the research group said.

"Despite the dip in March, it is clear that underlying inflationary pressures have increased significantly since the end of 2001," ECRI said in a statement.

The index's annualized growth rate, which smooths out monthly fluctuations, fell to 17.2 percent in March from 23.0 percent in February.