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Data: The Conference Board; Chart: Axios Visuals

The Conference Board's index of leading economic indicators increased for the third straight month in July but at a far slower pace than in the previous two months.

Why it matters: "Despite the recent gains in the LEI, which remain fairly broad-based, the initial post-pandemic recovery appears to be losing steam," Ataman Ozyildirim, senior director of economic research at The Conference Board, said in a statement accompanying the index's release.

  • "The LEI suggests that the pace of economic growth will weaken substantially during the final months of 2020."

What it means: The 10 components of index for the U.S. are...

  • Average weekly hours, manufacturing
  • Average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance
  • Manufacturers’ new orders, consumer goods and materials
  • ISM index of new orders
  • Manufacturers’ new orders, nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft orders
  • Building permits, new private housing units
  • Stock prices, 500 common stocks
  • Leading Credit Index
  • Interest rate spread, 10-year Treasury yields less Fed funds rate
  • Average consumer expectations for business conditions

Go deeper

Small company stocks thrive

Expand chart
Data: FactSet; Chart: Axios Visuals

An index of America's smallest companies closed at the highest level ever on Friday. It hasn't hit a new record in over two years.

Why it matters: The gulf between the biggest and smallest companies widened at the onset of the pandemic — with smaller companies (whose businesses are the most closely tied to the U.S. economy) seen as hit the hardest by the economic effects from COVID-19.

Cuomo says words may have been "misinterpreted" following allegations of harassment

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a Feb. 22 news conference. Photo: Seth Wenig/pool/AF via Getty Images

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a lengthy statement on Sunday saying he " never inappropriately touched anybody" but acknowledged that "some of the things I have said have been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation," after two of his former aides accused him of sexual harassment.

Why it matters: Prior to Cuomo's statement, in which he adds that he "never inappropriately touched anybody" or meant to make anyone uncomfortable, the governor's office and the state attorney general went back and forth in a public disagreement about how to investigate the allegations.

Cyber CEO: Next war will hit regular Americans online

Any future real-world conflict between the United States and an adversary like China or Russia will have direct impacts on regular Americans because of the risk of cyber attack, Kevin Mandia, CEO of cybersecurity company FireEye, tells "Axios on HBO."

What they're saying: "The next conflict where the gloves come off in cyber, the American citizen will be dragged into it, whether they want to be or not. Period."