Clever Economic Indicators

Raymond Pucci, CBI

Business owners and managers often look to understand and assess current and future business conditions, as well as trends in their markets and industries.

Every day, the immense volume of business news and data, financial reports, and economic forecasts makes us feel like we are drinking water from a fire hose. Print and electronic media are still key sources for this information, but have yielded their prime shelf space to Internet sources, E-newsletters and blogs, webinars, and podcasts.

Many business observers and industry watchers have come up with their own business and economic indicators that they trust and know to be reliable and reasonably accurate.

Recently released a list of “Uncommonly Clever Economic Indicators”. Click here to view article.

They include:

  • champagne sales
  • senior-living sign ups
  • hotel cancellations
  • shopping bag observation

These indicators do not require a big marketing budget or research staff to compile and tabulate, but rather are obtained simply from everyday observations, whether at work, driving, walking, traveling, or simply sitting on a public bench.

Here is one of mine: Parking garage rates and availability, as measures of business activity, retail activity, employment levels, and real estate trends.
Positive and upward economic indicators: High parking cost for 1st hour, Closed or Full signs, no special rates or discounts.
Negative  and downward economic indicators: Parking discounts at varying times of day, special monthly rates, signs displaying lower rates than nearby garages or lots.
Recently saw one garage with sign stating 25% off monthly rates.

So send me some of your own Clever Economic Indicators and I will report on them in a future blog. I will also preview how economic indicators, industry benchmarking, and company metrics can be used to develop value-enhancing ideas for your business and market.