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Category: Research - Topic: Economics - 201202



Chicago Purchasing Managers Index Stabilized rose to 64
Posted: February 29, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Wednesday)

The Chicago Purchasing Managers reported the February CHICAGO BUSINESS BAROMETER rose to its highest level in ten months. The barometer also marked a 29th month of expansion and its fourth consecutive month above 60. Increases were seen in six of eight Business Activity Indexes, highlighted by a very large advance in ...


4Q2011 GDP preliminary estimate up 3.0%
Posted: February 29, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Wednesday)

Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States -- increased at an annual rate of 3.0 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011 (that is, from the third quarter to the fourth quarter), according to the "second" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 29, 2012 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 0.3 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 24, 2012. This week’s results are adjusted for the Presidents Day holiday.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 0.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 9.4 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 2.2 ...


Consumer Confidence Increased Further in February
Posted: February 28, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had decreased in January, increased in February. The Index now stands at 70.8 (1985=100), up from 61.5 in January. The Present Situation Index increased to 45.0 from 38.8. The Expectations Index rose to 88.0 from 76.7 ...


Richmond Fed's Current Activity up 8 to 20
Posted: February 28, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Manufacturing activity in the central Atlantic region advanced for the third straight month, according to the Richmond Fed's latest survey. Our broadest indicators of overall activity — shipments, new orders and employment — remained in positive territory, and the rate of increase strengthened considerably from our last report. Other ...


S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices fell by 3.9%
Posted: February 28, 2012 at 09:00 AM (Tuesday)

Data through December 2011, released today by S&P Indices for its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices, showed that all three headline composites ended 2011 at new index lows. The national composite fell by 3.8% during the fourth quarter of 2011 and was down 4.0% versus the fourth quarter of 2010. Both ...


New Orders for Durable Goods Decreased 4.0%, Ex-Trans down 3.2%
Posted: February 28, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

New orders for manufactured durable goods in January decreased $8.6 billion or 4.0 percent to $206.1 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced today. This decrease, down following three consecutive monthly increases, followed a 3.2 percent December increase. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 3.2 percent. Excluding defense, new ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales declined 1.0% in Feb 25 Wk
Posted: February 28, 2012 at 07:45 AM (Tuesday)

The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) reported that chain store sales fell 1.0% from the prior week, but increased 2.7% over the prior-year period during the week ending Feb 25th. “A blast of warm temperatures rolled in again and gasoline prices continued to climb, which collectively helped to soften sales this past week,” ...


Texas Manufacturing Expansion Strengthens
Posted: February 27, 2012 at 10:30 AM (Monday)

Texas factory activity continued to increase in February, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, rose from 5.8 to 11.2, suggesting a pickup in the pace ...


Pending Home Sales rose 2.0%
Posted: February 27, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

Pending home sales are on an upward trend, which has been uneven but meaningful since reaching a cyclical low last April, and are well above a year ago, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, rose 2.0 percent to 97.0 in January from a downwardly revised 95.1 in December and is 8.0 percent higher than January 2011 when it was 89.8. The data reflects contracts but not closings. ...


New Home Sales in January at annual rate of 321,000
Posted: February 24, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

Sales of new single-family houses in January 2012 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 321,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 0.9 percent (±16.6%) below the revised December rate of 324,000, but is 3.5 percent (±17.6%) above the ...


University of Michigan Consumer Confidence rose to 75.3
Posted: February 24, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

Confidence remained strong due to a record number of consumers that were aware of ongoing increases in jobs. February marked the sixth consecutive month of gains in the Sentiment Index as consumers became more positive about prospects for the economy. Unfortunately, too few consumers have benefited from the recent job gains to alter ...


Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Activity Rebounded
Posted: February 23, 2012 at 11:00 AM (Thursday)

Tenth District manufacturing activity increased further in February, and expectations also climbed higher. Price indexes generally moderated from the previous month, although slightly more firms indicated plans to increase prices in the future.

The month-over-month composite index was 13 in February, up from 7 in January and -2 in December, and the highest since last June. The composite index is an average of the production, new orders, employment, supplier delivery time, and raw materials inventory indexes. ...


January Mass Layoffs total 1,434 actions, 129,920 workers
Posted: February 23, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

Employers took 1,434 mass layoff actions in January involving 129,920 workers, seasonally adjusted, as measured by new filings for unemployment insurance benefits during the month, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Each mass layoff involved at least 50 workers from a single employer. Mass layoff events in January increased by ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer fell by 0.4%
Posted: February 23, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending February 11, 2012, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer fell by -0.4 percent, erasing a gain of prior two weeks. Inflation-adjusted chain store sales dropped sharply by -2.0 percent in the latest week, and all other indexes of consumption sector decreased, dragging down the business barometer by roughly -0.6 percentage ...


Weekly initial unemployment claims unchanged at 351,000
Posted: February 23, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending February 18, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 351,000, unchanged from the previous week's revised figure of 351,000. The 4-week moving average was 359,000, a decrease of 7,000 from the previous week's revised average ...


Existing-Home Sales rose 4.3% in January
Posted: February 22, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Wednesday)

Existing-home sales rose in January, marking three gains in the past four months, while inventories continued to improve, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, increased 4.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.57 million in January from a downwardly revised 4.38 million-unit pace in ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales rose 3.0% in Feb 18 Wk
Posted: February 22, 2012 at 07:45 AM (Wednesday)

The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) reported that chain store sales rose 3.0% from the prior week, the best since Dec 18th, and increased 3.2% over the prior-year period during the week ending Feb 18th. “Valentine’s Day gifts likely contributed to the better performance this past week as sales volatility continued, but, this ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 22, 2012 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 4.5 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 17, 2012.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 4.5 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 3.6 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 4.8 ...


Chicago Fed National Activity Index decreased in January
Posted: February 21, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index decreased to +0.22 in January from +0.54 in December, but remained positive for the second straight month for the first time in a year. Three of the four broad categories of indicators that make up the index improved from December, and only the consumption and housing category’s contribution was negative ...


U.S. Leading Economic Index increased 0.4%
Posted: February 17, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.4 percent in January to 94.9 (2004 = 100), following a 0.5 percent increase in December and a 0.3 percent increase in November.

This fourth consecutive gain in the LEI reflected fairly widespread strength among its components, pointing to somewhat more positive economic conditions in early 2012. The LEI’s increase in January was led not only by improving financial and credit indicators, but also ...


Consumer Price Index up 0.2% in January, Ex Fd & Engy up 0.2%
Posted: February 17, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.2 percent in January on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 2.9 percent before seasonal adjustment.

The indexes for food, energy, and all items less food and energy all rose ...


Real Average Hourly Earnings unchanged% in January
Posted: February 17, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

Real average hourly earnings for all employees was unchanged from December 2011 to January 2012, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. A 0.2 percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) offset a 0.2 percent increase in the average ...


Philadelphia Fed February Outlook Suggest Continued Expansion
Posted: February 16, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

Responses from manufacturing firms polled for this month’s Business Outlook Survey suggest that regional manufacturing activity continued to expand in February. The survey’s broad indicators for general activity, new orders, and shipments all increased from their readings in January. Firms reported near-steady employment levels but an increase ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by 0.3%
Posted: February 16, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending February 4, 2012, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by +0.3 percent, rising for two weeks in a row. Inflation-adjusted chain store sales surged by +1.9 percent, with help of food and drink purchases for Super Bowl watching, and lifted the barometer index in the latest week. As for the production side, auto and ...


Producer Price Index up 0.1% in January, ex Fd & Engy up 0.4%
Posted: February 16, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

The Producer Price Index for finished goods advanced 0.1 percent in January, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Prices for finished goods declined 0.1 percent in December and moved up 0.2 percent in November. At the earlier stages of processing, the index for intermediate goods fell 0.4 percent in January, ...


January Housing starts up 1.5%, Permits up 0.7%
Posted: February 16, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

BUILDING PERMITS
Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in January were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 676,000. This is 0.7 percent (±1.2%) above the revised December rate of 671,000 and is 19.0 percent (±2.4%) above the January 2011 estimate of 568,000. Single-family authorizations in January were at a rate ...


Weekly initial unemployment claims decrease 13,000 to 348,000
Posted: February 16, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending February 11, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 348,000, a decrease of 13,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 361,000. The 4-week moving average was 365,250, a decrease of 1,750 from the previous week's revised average ...


Builder Confidence Rises Fifth Consecutive Month in February
Posted: February 15, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Wednesday)

Home builder confidence in the market for new single-family homes increased for the fifth consecutive month in February, rising from 25 to 29 on the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. It is the highest level the index has reached in more than ...


Industrial Production unchanged%
Capacity Utilization decreased to 78.5%

Posted: February 15, 2012 at 09:15 AM (Wednesday)

Industrial production was unchanged in January, as a gain of 0.7 percent in manufacturing was offset by declines in mining and utilities. Within manufacturing, the index for motor vehicles and parts jumped 6.8 percent and the index for other manufacturing industries increased 0.3 percent. The output of utilities fell 2.5 percent, as demand ...


Treasury International Capital Data for December 2011
Posted: February 15, 2012 at 09:00 AM (Wednesday)

The U.S. Department of the Treasury today released Treasury International Capital (TIC) data for December 2011. Foreign residents decreased their holdings of long-term U.S. securities in December — net sales were $21.0 billion.

Net sales by private foreign investors were $11.5 billion, and net sales by foreign official institutions were $9.5 billion. At the same time, U.S. residents decreased their holdings of long-term foreign securities, with net sales of $38.9 billion. ...


Empire State Manufacturing Survey Conditions Continue to Gain Momentum
Posted: February 15, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Wednesday)

The February Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that manufacturing activity in New York State expanded for a third consecutive month. The general business conditions index rose six points to 19.5, its highest level in more than a year. The new orders index, at 9.7, was positive but down slightly, and the shipments index was little ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's up in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 15, 2012 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 1.0 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 10, 2012.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 1.0 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index was essentially unchanged compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased ...


Business Inventories up 0.4% in December
Posted: February 14, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Sales. The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that the combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for December, adjusted for seasonal and trading-day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,230.0 billion, up 0.7 percent (±0.3%) from November 2011 and up 8.9 percent (±0.4%) from ...


U.S. Import Price Index rose 0.3% in January
Posted: February 14, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

U.S. import prices rose 0.3 percent in January, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, after ticking down 0.1 percent in December. Higher prices for both fuel and nonfuel imports contributed to the January increase. Prices for U.S. exports also advanced in January, rising 0.2 percent following a 0.5 percent decline the ...


U.S. Retail Sales for Jan up 0.4%, Ex-Auto up 0.7%
Posted: February 14, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for January, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $401.4 billion, an increase of 0.4 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month and 5.8 percent (±0.7%) above January 2011. Total ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales declined 2.0% in Feb 11 Wk
Posted: February 14, 2012 at 07:45 AM (Tuesday)

Mild temperatures combined with a light sales volume week caused weekly retail sales to drop for retailers. As a result, for the week ending February 11, 2012, retailers experienced a sharp weekly sales decline of 2.0%, according to International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales Index. On ...


NFIB Small Business Optimism Index gained 0.1 points to 93.9
Posted: February 14, 2012 at 07:30 AM (Tuesday)

The Index of Small Business Optimism gained 0.1 points, to 93.9, so basically unchanged from December. Index readings from January and February 2011 were higher, so we are still below where we were a year ago even though the Index has risen five months in a row. Except for January and February of 2011, the current Index is the highest ...


Forecasters Predict Stronger Labor Market
Posted: February 10, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

The outlook for growth in the U.S. economy looks mostly unchanged from that of three months ago, according to 45 forecasters surveyed by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. The panel expects real GDP to grow at an annual rate of 2.2 percent this quarter, down from the previous estimate of 2.4 percent. On an annual-average over ...


Goods and Services Deficit Increased in December 2011
Posted: February 10, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

The Nation’s international trade deficit in goods and services increased to $558.0 billion in 2011 from $500.0 billion in 2010.

The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, through the Department of Commerce, announced today that total December exports of $178.8 billion and imports of $227.6 billion resulted in a goods ...


Wholesale Inventories up 1.0% in December
Posted: February 9, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that December 2011 sales of merchant wholesalers, except manufacturers’ sales branches and offices, after adjustment for seasonal variations and trading-day differences but not for price changes, were $413.1 billion, up 1.3 percent (+/-0.7%) from the revised November level and were up 11.8 percent ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer edged up 0.1%
Posted: February 9, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending January 28, 2012, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer edged up +0.1 percent, following a drop of -0.6 percent in the prior week. Inflation-adjusted chain store sales increased slightly +0.1 percent, after a decline of -1.3 percent in the prior week, while railroad freight carloadings rebounded solidly. As for the ...


Weekly initial unemployment claims decrease 15,000 to 358,000
Posted: February 9, 2012 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending February 4, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 358,000, a decrease of 15,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 373,000. The 4-week moving average was 366,250, a decrease of 11,000 from the previous week's revised average ...


Purchase Apps up, Refi's up in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 8, 2012 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications increased 7.5 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 3, 2012.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 7.5 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 8.7 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased 9.4 ...


Consumer credit increased at an annual rate of 9.25%
Posted: February 7, 2012 at 03:00 PM (Tuesday)

Consumer credit increased at an annual rate of 7-1/2 percent in the fourth quarter. Revolving credit increased at an annual rate of 4-1/2 percent, and nonrevolving credit increased 9 percent. In December, consumer credit increased at an annual rate of 9-1/4 percent.

...


Job Openings were 3.4 million in December
Posted: February 7, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

There were 3.4 million job openings on the last business day of December, up from 3.1 million in November, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The hires rate (3.1 percent) and separations rate (3.0 percent) were unchanged over the month. The job openings rate has trended upward since the end of the recession in June ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales rose 1.8% in Feb 4 Wk
Posted: February 7, 2012 at 07:45 AM (Tuesday)

The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) reported that chain store sales rose 1.8% from the prior week and increased 3.5% over the prior-year period during the week ending Feb 4th. On a year‐over‐year basis, mild weather in the past week compared with a Groundhog Day snowstorm in 2011 helped the year over comparisons in some ...


Employment Trends Index Increased in January to 105.81
Posted: February 6, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

The Conference Board Employment Trends Index™ (ETI) increased 0.73% in January to 105.81, from the revised figure of 105.04 in December. The January figure is also up 5.9 percent from the same month a year ago.

The Employment Trends Index has been improving rapidly for four straight months, suggesting somewhat more robust job growth is likely to continue in this quarter. Beyond that we still remain cautious. We expect sluggish growth in economic activity in the first half of 2012 ...


ISM Non-Manufacturing Index grew faster at 56.8%
Posted: February 3, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

Economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in January for the 25th consecutive month, say the nation's purchasing and supply executives in the latest Non-Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®.

The NMI registered 56.8 percent in January, 3.8 percentage points higher than the seasonally adjusted 53 percent registered in December, and indicating continued growth at a faster rate in the non-manufacturing sector. The Non-Manufacturing Business Activity Index ...


New orders for manufactured goods increased 1.1%
Posted: February 3, 2012 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

New orders for manufactured goods in December, up two consecutive months, increased $5.3 billion or 1.1 percent to $466.2 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today. This followed a 2.2 percent November increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased ...



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