Stock-Watson Experimental Coincident,

Leading and Recession Indexes

The Stock-Watson Indicators Retire

After 14 years and 6 months of monthly releases, we have retired the Stock-Watson XRI and related series.  The last monthly release was for December 2003.  One important purpose of the monthly XRI reports was to provide interested entities with forecasts about the current and future state of the business cycle.  A second important purpose was to establish a real-time public forecasting record that could serve as the basis for further research and revision.  We believe that we have achieved these two objectives.  Over the past decade, there has been considerable progress on “next generation” methods for assessing the current state of the business cycle and for making near-term forecasts.  Some of this research has produced new real-time indexes. 

The most direct successor of the Stock-Watson indexes is the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI), a monthly index constructed using 85 monthly indicators based on an extension of the methodology used to construct the original Stock-Watson XCI.  The CFNAI is available at,

A coincident index for the Euro-zone, also based on an extension of the Stock-Watson XCI methodology, is available through the CEPR in real time at,

Back Releases

For now, historical values of the press release are available at this Web site.  For example, the September 2002 report is stored at the location, 

Historical values (produced in real time) are also available.  For example, the historical values based on data data through September 2002 are available at the location,

Back releases for other months are available by modifying the yymm code in the above addresses.

Note that the Web server has releases for September 1999 through December 2003.  Earlier releases were circulated by hard copy and those releases are available by request (contact James Stock at


James H. Stock

Mark W. Watson

This page last revised June 22, 2004