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Category: Research - Topic: Economics - 201403



Texas Manufacturing Activity at a Stronger Pace Reflecting more Robust Growth
Posted: March 31, 2014 at 10:38 AM (Monday)

Texas factory activity increased for the eleventh month in a row in March, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, rose from 10.8 to 17.1, indicating output grew at a stronger pace than ...


Chicago Purchasing Managers Index down 3.9 points to 55.9 in March
Posted: March 31, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

- New Orders and Order Backlogs Expand at Slower Rate
- Employment Falls Sharply to Neutral

The Chicago Business Barometer decreased 3.9 points in March to 55.9, the lowest level since August, led by a decline in New Orders and a sharp fall in Employment. Business activity slowed, with the Barometer averaging 58.4 in the first quarter, down from a two and a half ...


University of Michigan Consumer Confidence dipped at 80.0
Posted: March 28, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

Consumer confidence has remained largely unchanged in the past three months despite the hard winter as well as a severe drought. The current state of consumer finances were just as strong in March as in December, and more importantly, consumers viewed their financial prospects for the year ahead much more favorably in March than at the start ...


Personal Income increased 0.3%, Spending increased 0.3%
Posted: March 28, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

Personal income increased $47.7 billion, or 0.3 percent, and disposable personal income (DPI) increased $42.3 billion, or 0.3 percent, in February, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $30.8 billion, or 0.3 percent. In January, personal income increased $41.3 billion, or 0.3 percent, ...


Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Activity Improved due to better weather
Posted: March 27, 2014 at 11:00 AM (Thursday)

Growth in Tenth District manufacturing activity increased in March, and producers’ expectations were mostly stable at solid levels. Some contacts attributed improved activity to better weather conditions. Many firms cited difficulties finding qualified workers with some additional pressure on wages. Most price indexes were stable or ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by 0.1%
Posted: March 27, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending March 15 2014, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by 0.1 percent for two consecutive weeks. Upturns in consumption indexes again cancelled out declines in production indexes. Chain store sales rose by 0.8 percent following a 1.3 percent increase in the prior week and railroad freight carloadings picked up ...


Pending Home Sales Index dipped 0.8%
Posted: March 27, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

Pending home sales declined for the eighth straight month in February, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Modest increases in the Midwest and West were offset by declines in the Northeast and South; all regions are below a year ago.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, dipped 0.8 percent to 93.9 from a downwardly revised 94.7 in January, and is 10.5 percent below February 2013 when it was 104.9. The February reading was the lowest since October 2011, ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Decrease 10,000 to 311,000
Posted: March 27, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending March 22, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 311,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 321,000. The 4-week moving average was 317,750, a decrease of 9,500 from the previous week's revised average ...


4Q2013 GDP final estimate increased 2.6%
Posted: March 27, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

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 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013 (that is, from the third quarter to the fourth quarter), according to the "third" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the ...


New Orders for Durable Goods Increased 2.2%, Ex-Trans Up 0.2%
Posted: March 26, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Wednesday)

New orders for manufactured durable goods in February increased $5.0 billion or 2.2 percent to $229.4 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced today. This increase, up following two consecutive monthly decreases, followed a 1.3 percent January decrease. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.2 percent. Excluding defense, new ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: March 26, 2014 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 3.5 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 21, 2014. This week's results are compared to a revised level from last week. The seasonally adjusted market index, initially reported as a decline of ...


Consumer Confidence improved in March to 82.3
Posted: March 25, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had decreased in February, improved in March. The Index now stands at 82.3 (1985=100), up from 78.3 in February. The Present Situation Index edged down to 80.4 from 81.0, while the Expectations Index increased to 83.5 ...


New Home Sales in February at annual rate of 440,000
Posted: March 25, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Sales of new single-family houses in February 2014 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 440,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 3.3 percent (±17.9%) below the revised January rate of 455,000 and is 1.1 percent (±15.2%)* below the ...


Richmond Fed's Current Activity Index dipped one point to -7
Posted: March 25, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Fifth District manufacturing activity remained soft in March, according to the most recent survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Shipments and the volume of new orders declined. Manufacturing employment remained flat, while the average workweek edged up and wages ...


S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices declined 0.1%
Posted: March 25, 2014 at 09:00 AM (Tuesday)

Data through January 2014, released today by S&P Dow Jones Indices for its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices, showed that the 10-City and 20-City Composites rose 13.5% and 13.2% year-over-year. Twelve cities and the 20-City Composite saw their annual ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales slipped by 1.5% in Mar 22 Wk
Posted: March 25, 2014 at 07:45 AM (Tuesday)

fter three weekly sequential sales gains retailers experienced mixed results as retail demand varied across categories and overall was softer than the prior week. For the week ending March 22, 2014 weekly sales slipped by 1.5%, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales ...


Chicago Fed National Activity increased in February
Posted: March 24, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Monday)

Led by improvements in production-related indicators, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) increased to +0.14 in February from –0.45 in January. Three of the four broad categories of indicators that make up the index increased from January, and two of the four categories made positive contributions to the index ...


U.S. Leading Economic Index increased 0.5%
Posted: March 20, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.5 percent in February to 99.8 (2004 = 100), following a 0.1 percent increase in January, and a 0.1 percent decline in December.

The U.S. LEI increased sharply in February, suggesting that any weather-related volatility will be short lived and the economy should continue to improve into the second half of the year. The strengths and weaknesses in the LEI were balanced in February, with large ...


Existing-Home Sales declined 0.4% in February
Posted: March 20, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

Home prices continued to show solid growth in most of the country due to limited inventory conditions, but rising prices and severe winter weather caused existing-home sales to slip in February, 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, declined 0.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.60 million in February from 4.62 million in January, and 7.1 percent below the ...


Philadelphia March Outlook Suggest Activity Rebounded This Month
Posted: March 20, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

Manufacturing activity rebounded in March, according to firms responding to this month’s Business Outlook Survey. The survey’s broadest indicators for general activity, new orders, and shipments increased and recorded positive readings this month, suggesting a return to growth following weather-related weakness in February. Firms’ ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by 0.1%
Posted: March 20, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending March 8 2014, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased slightly by 0.1 percent following a 0.4 percent rise in the prior week. Decreases in production indexes were more than offset by increases in consumption indexes, in particular, chain store sales, rising by 1.3 percent. Meanwhile, railroad freight carloadings ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Increase 5,000 to 320,000
Posted: March 20, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending March 15, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 320,000, an increase of 5,000 from the previous week's unrevised figure of 315,000. The 4-week moving average was 327,000, a decrease of 3,500 from the previous week's unrevised average ...


Federal Open Market Committee Press Conference
Posted: March 19, 2014 at 02:30 PM (Wednesday)

FOMC target funds rate still 0 - 1/4%, QE now $55 bil, Updated guidance
Posted: March 19, 2014 at 02:00 PM (Wednesday)

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in January indicates that growth in economic activity slowed during the winter months, in part reflecting adverse weather conditions. Labor market indicators were mixed but on balance showed further improvement. The unemployment rate, however, remains elevated. Household spending ...


4Q2013 Current Account Deficit Decreased
Posted: March 19, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Wednesday)

The U.S. current-account deficit—the combined balances on trade in goods and services, income, and net unilateral current transfers—decreased to $81.1 billion (preliminary) in the fourth quarter from $96.4 billion (revised) in the third quarter. The deficit decreased to 1.9 percent of current-dollar gross domestic product (GDP) from 2.3 percent ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: March 19, 2014 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 1.2 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 14, 2014.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 1.2 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 1 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 1 ...


February Housing Starts down 0.2%, Permits up 7.7%
Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

BUILDING PERMITS
Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in February were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,018,000. This is 7.7 percent (±1.0%) above the revised January rate of 945,000 and is 6.9 percent (±1.2%) above the February 2013 estimate of 952,000. Single-family authorizations in February were at a rate ...


Consumer Price Index increased 0.1% in February, Ex Fd & Engy up 0.1%
Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.1 percent in February on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 1.1 percent before seasonal adjustment.

An increase in the food index accounted for more than half of the all items increase in February. The food index rose 0.4 percent in February, driven by a 0.5 percent increase in the index for food at home, with four of the six major grocery store food group indexes ...


Real Average Hourly Earnings rose 0.3% in February
Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

Real average hourly earnings for all employees rose 0.3 percent from January to February, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This increase stems from a 0.4 percent increase in average hourly earnings being partially offset by a 0.1 percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales rose by 1.5% in Mar 15 Wk
Posted: March 18, 2014 at 07:45 AM (Tuesday)

U.S. chain-store sales rose 1.5 percent year on year for the week that ended on March 15, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs. Comparable-store sales improved 0.7 percent from the previous week.

“Weather Trends International put it best on the weather conditions over the past week when they said, it was a ‘battle between winter and spring,’ which seemingly added to the mixed performance for the industry,” said Michael Niemira, ICSC's vice president of research and ...


Builder Confidence Rose 1 point in March to 47
Posted: March 17, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

Builder confidence in the market for newly-built, single-family homes rose one point to 47 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), released today.

The March HMI mirrors last month’s sentiment, as builders continued to be affected by poor weather and difficulties in finding lots and labor. ...


Industrial Production increased 0.6%
Capacity Utilization increased to 78.8%

Posted: March 17, 2014 at 09:15 AM (Monday)

Industrial production increased 0.6 percent in February after having declined 0.2 percent in January. In February, manufacturing output rose 0.8 percent and nearly reversed its decline of 0.9 percent in January, which resulted, in part, from extreme weather. The gain in factory production in February was the largest since last August. The ...


Treasury International Capital Data for January 2014
Posted: March 17, 2014 at 09:00 AM (Monday)

The U.S. Department of the Treasury today released Treasury International Capital (TIC) data for January 2014. The sum total in January of all net foreign acquisitions of long-term securities, short-term U.S. securities, and banking flows was a monthly net TIC inflow of $83.0 billion. Of this, net foreign private inflows were $115.9 billion, ...


Empire State Manufacturing Survey Conditions Continue to Improve Modestly
Posted: March 17, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Monday)

The March 2014 Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that business conditions continued to improve for New York manufacturers, though activity grew slowly. At 5.6, the general business conditions index was little changed from last month. The new orders index climbed three points to 3.1, indicating that orders were slightly higher, and ...


Producer Price Index fell 0.1% in February, ex Fd & Engy up 0.2%
Posted: March 14, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

The Producer Price Index for final demand fell 0.1 percent in February, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This decline followed advances of 0.2 percent in January and 0.1 percent in December. On an unadjusted basis, the index for final demand moved up 0.9 percent for the 12 months ended in February, ...


Business Inventories up 0.4% in January
Posted: March 13, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that the combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for January, adjusted for seasonal and trading-day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,302.9 billion, down 0.9 percent (±0.2) from December 2013, but were up 2.5 percent (±0.4) from ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer picked up by 0.4%
Posted: March 13, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending March 1 2014, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer picked up by 0.4 percent following a large decline of 0.7 percent in the prior week. Most of the production indexes bounced back from decreases last week and pushed up this week’s barometer. Electric output increased significantly by 8.5 percent, rebounding from a 10.8 ...


U.S. Import Price Index increased 0.9% in February
Posted: March 13, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

U.S. import prices increased 0.9 percent in February following a 0.4 percent advance the previous month, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The February advance was led by higher fuel prices which more than offset declining nonfuel prices. U.S. export prices rose 0.6 percent in February, after increasing 0.2 percent ...


U.S. Retail Sales for February increase 0.3%, Ex-Auto up 0.3%
Posted: March 13, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for February, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $427.2 billion, an increase of 0.3 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month, and 1.5 percent (±0.9%) above February 2013. ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Decrease 9,000 to 315,000
Posted: March 13, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending March 8, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 315,000, a decrease of 9,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 324,000. The 4-week moving average was 330,500, a decrease of 6,250 from the previous week's revised average ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: March 12, 2014 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

MMortgage applications decreased 2.1 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 7, 2014.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 2.1 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 1 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 3 ...


Job Openings were 4.0 million in January
Posted: March 11, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

There were 4.0 million job openings on the last business day of January, little changed from December, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The hires rate (3.3 percent) and separations rate (3.2 percent) were little changed in January. This release includes estimates of the number and rate of job openings, hires, and separations ...


Wholesale Inventories up 0.6% in January
Posted: March 11, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that January 2014 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 $432.6 billion, down 1.9 percent (+/-0.5%) from the revised December level, but were up 3.9 percent ...


ICSC Chain Store Sales rose by 1.3% in Mar 8 Wk
Posted: March 11, 2014 at 07:45 AM (Tuesday)

Retail sales roared like a lion during the past week ending March 8, 2014. Sales rose by a solid 1.3%, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales Index. Sales also improved on a year-over-year basis, up 2.1% in the latest period, after a soft patch during the prior ...


NFIB Small Business Optimism Index fell 2.7 points to 91.4
Posted: March 11, 2014 at 07:30 AM (Tuesday)

The Small Business Optimism Index fell 2.7 points to 91.4, a substantial reversal in an unexciting January measure but ends a 3 month improvement trend. Only one of the Index components improved, three were unchanged, and six were lower, indicating that the small business half of the economy is still adding little to growth beyond that needed ...


Employment Trends Index increased in February to 116.39
Posted: March 10, 2014 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

The Conference Board Employment Trends Index™ (ETI) increased in February. The index now stands at 116.39, up from 115.99 (a downward revision) in January. This represents a 4.4 percent gain in the ETI compared to a year ago.

February’s job report and the ongoing improvement in the Employment Trends Index should provide some relief for those concerned about weakness in the U.S. economy and labor market. The majority of the ETI’s components have been steadily rising in recent months, suggesting ...


Consumer Credit Increased at an annual rate of 5.25%
Posted: March 7, 2014 at 03:00 PM (Friday)

In January, consumer credit increased at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5-1/4 percent. Revolving credit decreased at an annual rate of 1/4 percent, while nonrevolving credit increased at an annual rate of 7-1/2 percent.

...


February Employment increased by 175,000
Unemployment Rate increased to 6.7%

Posted: March 7, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 175,000 in February, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 6.7 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in professional and business services and in wholesale trade but declined ...


Goods and Services Deficit Increased in January 2014
Posted: March 7, 2014 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

The Nation’s international trade deficit in goods and services increased to $39.1 billion in January from $39.0 billion in December (revised), as imports increased more than exports.

The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, through the Department of Commerce, announced today that total January exports of $192.5 billion and imports of $231.6 billion resulted in a goods and services deficit of $39.1 billion, up from $39.0 billion ...


New orders for manufactured goods decreased 0.7%
Posted: March 6, 2014 at 10:17 AM (Thursday)

New orders for manufactured goods in January, down three of the last four months, decreased $3.3 billion or 0.7 percent to $483.0 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today. This followed a 2.0 percent December decrease. Excluding transportation, new orders increased ...



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