World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

The Sales Managers' Index: United States

Released: November 18, 2014

US Business Activity High with Headline SMI of 58.3 in November

  • US Manufacturing SMI falls to 58.1, Services to 59.1
  • Business Confidence remains buoyant
  • Payrolls continue trend rise ahead of holiday season

The Sales Managers’ Index is the first all sector monthly economic activity index release covering the US economy.

The overall Sales Managers’ Headline Index (calculated from an average of the Confidence, Growth, Price and Staffing Indexes) registered a value of 58.3 in November, down by 1.0 from its value in October. The Index has not increased on a monthly basis since June 2014 indicating that economic activity remains high. All Indexes reflect strong and continuing economic growth.

Real GDP Outlook
The Headline SMI is a leading indicator of business conditions as reported by sales managers across the US economy and as such has a strong relationship with anticipated GDP. The gentle monthly downward path of the Headline Index since the end of Q2 2014 suggests that rate of real GDP growth in Q4 2014 will be strong and expected to be in the region of 3%.

Sector Analysis
Splitting the sample of panellists into Manufacturing and Services shows continuing strong growth. 

The US Manufacturing Headline SMI for November stood at 58.1, down slightly by 0.4 from the month before. The US Services SMI registered a similar value of 59.1 falling by 1.0 on its value in October, but there has been a gentle monthly decline from its high of 61.8 in June 2014.

Business Confidence
The Business Confidence Index rose by 0.3 to register a value of 66.3 in November.

This effectively unchanged value indicates that most panellists in the US remain confident about business conditions in the coming months.

Market Growth
The Market Growth Index reflects growth of the general marketplace in panellists’ own industry sectors.

The Market Growth Index for the month registered a value of 59.7 in November, down by 1.8 on October. This is the third successive month the value of this Index has declined, but it remains at a high level indicating that panellists continue to report robust growth in the markets they operate in.

Product Sales
The Product Sales Index represents sales made by panellists’ own companies. The November Index registered a value of 55.2, down by 2.6 on the month before. This is the fifth successive month that this Index has declined, but the results indicate that panellists are seeing a faster decline in the rate of growth of own companies’ sales compared with overall market growth.

Prices Charged
The Prices Charged Index fell by 0.8 to register a value of 53.8 in November. This the third consecutive month that this Index has dropped following a period of stability around 56.0 in the first half of the year. Prices have been rising steadily through most of 2014, but the rate of inflation is now coming down.

Staffing Levels
The Staffing Index reflects the number of staff taken on compared to the same period in the last year.

November recorded a Staffing Index value of 56.7 up by 0.2 on the month before. With only a few negative months, the Staffing Index has recorded a trend increase since November 2013 with an average monthly rise of 0.4 over the period. This indicates that payrolls are increasing at a small but steadily accelerating rate of growth.

World Economics Chief Executive Ed Jones commented on the release:

&ldquoThe Headline SMI Index for the US economy in November continues to show strong business activity. Both the Manufacturing and Services Sectors are growing at similar rates, while panellists report that Market Growth is faster than Sales Growth. The rate of inflation is falling, but payrolls continue to rise steadily.”


For further information media & press enquires please contact:  

Amelia Myles, Communications Manager
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F: +44 (0) 20 7326 8351 

Notes to Editors
The Sales Managers’ Index is produced by World Economics and is based on original survey data collected from a panel of Sales managers in all sectors of the US economy except those controlled by the Government.

The Sales Managers’ Index results are calculated by taking the percentage of respondents that report that the activity has risen (“Increasing") and adding it to one-half of the percentage that report the activity has not changed (“Unchanged"). Using half of the “Unchanged" percentage effectively measures the bias toward a positive (above 50 points) or negative (below 50 points) index. An example of how to calculate a diffusion index: if the response is 40% “Increasing," 40% “Unchanged," and 20% “Reducing," the Diffusion Index would be 60 points (40% + [0.50 x 40%]). A value of 50 indicates "no change" from the previous month.

The more distant the index is from the amount that would indicate "no change" (50 points), the greater the rate of change indicated. Therefore, an index value of 58 indicates a faster rate of increase than an index value of 53, and an index value of 40 indicates a faster rate of decrease than an index value of 45. A value of 100 indicates all respondents are reporting increased activity while 0 indicates that all respondents report decreased activity. 

About the Sales Managers’ Indexes
The Sales Managers’ Indexes are a series of new products available for Africa, Asia and the Americas, designed to raise the voice and profile of sales people throughout the world. The Sales Managers’ Indexes provide the earliest indication each and every month of the direction of economic activity, and the speed at which its markets are growing.  

Sales Managers are unique as an occupational group in being really at the front line of economic activity. The Sales Manager is ideally placed to feel the first few whispers of caution in the market or to see the new green shoots of economic recovery. 

The Sales Managers’ Index brings together the collective wisdom of Sales Managers and consequently produces the best and earliest source of understanding about what’s really happening in the Chinese economy.  

TThe Sales Managers’ Index has been developed by World Economics, a leading edge provider of original economic data. Sister products include the World Economics Journal, the World Price Index, the Global Marketing Index, as well as the China, India and Eurozone Growth Monitors.

About World Economics
World Economics is an organisation dedicated to producing analysis, insight and data relating to questions of importance in understanding the world economy.

Currently our primary research objective is to encourage and assist the development of better and faster measures of economic activity. In cases where we believe we can contribute directly, as opposed to through highlighting the work of others, we are producing our own measures of economic activity.

Our work is mainly of interest to investors, organisations and individuals in the financial sector and to significant corporations with global operations, as well as governments and academic economists.

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710 days ago
Style now is very good, the information if continuously updated. Thank you

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