"The Dow Jones ESI's rise suggests the prospects of a double dip recession have receded," Dow Jones Newswires "Money Talks" Columnist Alen Mattich said. "The ESI is still at a very low level, just above where it has in the past signalled a drop into recession. The indicator, however, has been steadily climbing since April 2010 which implies continued economic improvement."
The ESI is determined using an economic sentiment analysis algorithm to review news coverage in 15 daily newspapers across the U.S.
Although the index was pulled down by economic news such as reporting of the Federal Reserve's "Beige Book" report with its signals that the recovery is slowing, this was counterbalanced by positive reporting on earnings and the European bank stress tests.
The index was also boosted by local reports indicating that the outlook is not so gloomy. Among them were reports that condominium sales are thawing in downtown Boston, boat sales are recovering in Chicago, and San Francisco is forging ahead with the $1.6 billion Transbay transit terminal.
The Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator aims to predict the health of the U.S. economy by analyzing the coverage of 15 major daily newspapers in the U.S. Using a proprietary algorithm and derived data technology, the ESI examines every article in each of the newspapers for positive and negative sentiment about the economy. The indicator is calculated through Dow Jones Insight, a media tracking and analysis tool. The technology used for the ESI also powers Dow Jones Lexicon, a proprietary dictionary that allows traders and analysts to determine sentiment, frequency and other relevant complex patterns within news to develop predictive trading strategies.
The ESI's back-testing to 1990 shows that the ESI clearly highlighted the risk that the U.S. economy was sliding into recession in 2001 and 2008 and suggests the indicator can help predict economic turning points as much as seven months in advance of other indicators. More information about the Economic Sentiment Indicator and its development is available at http://dowjones.com/esi .