Chicago Business Barometer & Research

Monthly Survey - Chicago Business Barometer 

The ISM Chicago Business Survey, is a regional view of the national economy; is a time-tested, market-moving report.  The Chicago Report is available to subscribers on the last working day each month.   The Chicago Business Barometer summarizes  current Business Activity.  The Barometer is considered to be a leading indicator of the U.S.A. economy.

For more than seven decades, the Chicago Business Barometer has been providing leading insight on the U.S. economy.  The Chicago Business Barometer is delivered to subscribers via the MNI Chicago Report, a monthly report published by MNI Indicators that presents valuable information on the U.S. economic activity and a fresh look at current U.S. business conditions.  The report consists of seven Business Activity indicators and three Buying Policy indicators that represent activity and preformance levels compared to the prior month.

Purchasing and Supply Management professionals in the Chicago area, primarily members of ISM Chicago, are polled to assess business conditions for their respective companies every month.

For more information about the Chicago Business Barometer and MNI Indicators products, please contact

Periodically, ISM Chicago may invite our members and community to participate in additional research. 



February - Chicago Business Barometer


The Chicago Business Barometer softened -0.2 points to 44.0 in February.  This is the third consecutive monthly decline, pushing the index deeper into contractionary territory, and marking the lowest print since July 2023.  We also note that this print is -1.4 points below the 2023 average.

Production fell to its lowest level since May 2023.  The decline was driven by a greater number of respondents reporting lower production.

Employment dropped to its lowest level since July 2023.  The smallest proportion of respondents, since May 2020, reported that they had increased employment.  The largest proportion of respondents reported lower levels of employment since July 2023.

A special question in February asked: How have changes in financial conditions affected your access to borrowing?  55.2% expected "No impact", while 10.3% were winding down borrowing due to higher costs.  


Press Release


8 benefits of automating supply chain processes 



The supply chain has grown too complex for manual processes to handle the growing influx of data, and automation can help increase visibility and reduce delays and disruptions.  Matt McLarty of Boomi writes.  McLarty outlines eight areas where supply chain automation can make a marked difference.


Full Story: Supply & Demand Chain Executive magazine


View Article




Digitize Your Onboarding - Tami Trout



It's time for a digital workforce transformation.  Modern manufacurers have to juggle evolving expectations for workplace flexibility, pay, career paths and benefits.  They also have to take into account the changes in the ways employee learn and access information.   

Full Story: CERM Risk Insights 

View Article

Special Question - February

A special questions in February asked: How have changes in financial conditions affected your access to borrowing?  55.2% of respondents expected "No Impact", while 10.3% were winding down borrowing due to higher cost.  Balance of data in graph.

See breakout of responses in graph.