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Weekly Economic Index

The Weekly Economic Index (WEI) provides a signal of the state of the U.S. economy based on data available at a daily or weekly frequency. It represents the common component of 10 different daily and weekly series covering consumer behavior, the labor market and production. It is updated Tuesday and Thursday at 10:30 a.m. CT, using data available up to 8 a.m. CT.

NOTE: Due to a change in the calculation of the tax withholding data, the January 13 update of the WEI excludes tax withholding data released after the revision. The new data and revision will be incorporated in the next WEI release.
NOTE: Due to the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday’s effect on data releases, there will be no Weekly Economic Index update on Tuesday, January 18. The next update will be on Thursday, Jan. 20.

January 13, 2022: Update

  • The WEI is currently 6.11 percent, scaled to four-quarter GDP growth, for the week ended January 8 and 7.10 percent for January 1; for reference, the WEI stood at 1.53 percent for the week ended February 29, 2020.
  • The decrease in the WEI for the week of January 8 (relative to the final estimate for the week of January 1) is due to decreases in rail traffic (relative to the same time last year) and fuel sales and an increase in initial unemployment insurance claims, which more than offset an increase in electricity output. The WEI for the week of January 1 was revised upward due to continuing unemployment insurance claims, which while higher than the previous week, still provided a more positive signal than previously available data. As an alternative measure, the data for the week ended January 1 indicates a +0.88 percentage point change in activity relative to February 2020.
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    NOTES: When federal holidays occur on a publishing date or change the release schedule for the underlying data, the report is delayed by 24 hours. Data are updated at Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and jimstock.org.

WEI Authors

The WEI was developed by Daniel J. Lewis, an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; Karel Mertens, senior economic policy advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas; and James H. Stock, professor of economics at Harvard University.