In Japan, the Leading Composite Index consists of 12 indexes such as account inventory ratios, machinery orders, stock prices and other leading economic indicators. The index anticipates changes in the direction of the Japanese economy in the coming months. In general, increase in the index reflects that the economy is in an expansion phase, and decreasing coincident index reflects that the economy is in a contraction phase. The index is used to make official judgements on when the business cycle begins and ends. .