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Forecast Hints at Improved Growth in US Economy in 2nd Half of Year

A closely watched forecast of future U.S. economic activity rose for the third month in a row, suggesting better growth in the second half of this year.

The private Conference Board's Index of Leading Economic Indicators inched up by 0.1 percent in June, after rising more than a percent in May and a fraction in April. The research group said the figure reflects growth for the first time in more than a year, but warned it is too early to tell if the trend will continue.

The index forecasts where the U.S. economy is headed over the next three to six months.