Coronavirus High Frequency Data


We all know that the economy is slowing precipitously because of government shutdowns.  Monthly and quarterly data take time to come in, for example Q2 GDP will not be out until July.  However, there are some "high frequency data" that are available on a daily or weekly basis.  As we watch these in the next few weeks, we expect them to all remain extremely weak.  This won't be a surprise.

However, when we start to open the economy, these data will turn before the monthly and quarterly data do.  That's why they are important to watch.  We will be posting them on our blog every Thursday in order to help those who are interested in the economy to keep track.

The one surprise, for now, is that retail sales have continued to grow.  We think this is due to grocery store sales, as people eat in and stay at home, rather than going to a place of work or out to restaurants.  We expect this to slow in the weeks ahead, just as all these other data points signal weakness in just about every sector of the economy.

Source: First Trust Advisors, Department of Labor, Redbook Research, Box Office Mojo,  Association of American Railroads, American Iron and Steel Institute,  Hotel News Now, Opentable, Transportation Security Administration, Energy Information Administration

1 Data for level, year ago level, and month ago level are all YOY % changes.

2 Data is provided daily instead of weekly.

3 Data shows year-over-year seated diners at restaurants on the OpenTable network across all channels: online reservations, phone reservations, and walk-ins. % change month over month is the current reading minus the month ago reading.

Posted on Monday, April 13, 2020 @ 1:55 PM

These posts were prepared by First Trust Advisors L.P., and reflect the current opinion of the authors. They are based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security.