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Category: Research - Topic: Economics - 201502



Pending Home Sales Index increased 1.7% in January
Posted: February 27, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

Improved buyer demand at the beginning of 2015 pushed pending home sales in January to their highest level since August 2013, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions except for the Midwest saw gains in activity in January.

The Pending Home Sales Index,* a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, climbed 1.7 percent to 104.2 in January from an upwardly revised 102.5 in December and is now 8.4 percent above January 2014 (96.1). This marks the fifth consecutive month of ...


University of Michigan Consumer Confidence fell in February to 95.4
Posted: February 27, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

Consumer optimism was affected by lower gas prices and an unusually harsh winter. The small overall decline from January still left consumer confidence at the highest levels in eight years. It is hard not to attribute the small February decline to the temporary impact of the harsh weather, as declines that occurred in the Northeast and ...


Chicago Purchasing Managers Index plunged 13.6 points to 45.8 in February
Posted: February 27, 2015 at 09:45 AM (Friday)

The Chicago Business Barometer plunged 13.6 points to 45.8 in February, the lowest level since July 2009 and the first time in contraction since April 2013.

The sharp fall in business activity in February came as Production, New Orders, Order Backlogs and Employment all suffered double digit losses, leaving them below the 50 level which separates contraction from expansion. ...


4Q2014 GDP preliminary estimate increased 2.2%
Posted: February 27, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

Real gross domestic product -- the value of the production of goods and services in the United States, adjusted for price changes -- increased at an annual rate of 2.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014, according to the "second" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased ...


Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Activity expanded just slightly in February
Posted: February 26, 2015 at 11:00 AM (Thursday)

Tenth District manufacturing activity expanded just slightly in February, but producers expected activity to pick up moderately in the months ahead. Most price indexes continued to decrease, with several reaching their lowest level since 2009.

The month-over-month composite index was 1 in February, down from 3 in January and 8 in December. The composite index is an average of the production, new orders, employment, supplier delivery time, and raw materials inventory indexes. The overall slower growth was mostly ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer fell slightly by 0.1%
Posted: February 26, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending February 14 2015, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer fell slightly by 0.1 percent to 98.3. The decrease in this week’s barometer is mainly owing to weak performances in production indexes, in which all except lumber production reported losses. For instance, auto production slipped again by 6.2 percent, following a 4.2 ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Increase 31,000 to 313,000
Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending February 21, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 313,000, an increase of 31,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised down by 1,000 from 283,000 to 282,000. The 4-week moving average was 294,500, an increase of 11,500 from the previous week's revised average. ...


Real Average Hourly Earnings rose 1.2% in January
Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

Real average hourly earnings for all employees rose 1.2 percent from December to January, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This result stems from a 0.5 percent increase in average hourly earnings combined with a 0.7 percent decrease in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban ...


Consumer Price Index declined 0.7% in January, Ex Fd & Engy rose 0.2%
Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) declined 0.7 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 decreased 0.1 percent before seasonal adjustment.

The energy index fell 9.7 percent as the gasoline index fell 18.7 percent in January, the sharpest in a series of seven consecutive declines. The gasoline decrease was overwhelmingly the cause of the decline in the all items index, which would have risen 0.1 percent had the ...


New Orders for Durable Goods Increased 2.8%, Ex-Trans Up 0.3%
Posted: February 26, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

New orders for manufactured durable goods in January increased $6.5 billion or 2.8 percent to $236.1 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced today. This increase, up following two consecutive monthly decreases, followed a 3.7 percent December decrease. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.3 percent. Excluding defense, new ...


New Home Sales in January at annual rate of 481,000
Posted: February 25, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Wednesday)

Sales of new single-family houses in January 2015 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 481,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 0.2 percent (±22.2%) below the revised December rate of 482,000, but is 5.3 percent (±22.1%)* above the ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 25, 2015 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Continuing a trend throughout February, mortgage applications dropped 3.5% from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 20, 2015. This week’s results include an adjustment to account for the Presidents’ ...


Consumer Confidence declined in February to 96.4
Posted: February 24, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had increased in January, declined in February. The Index now stands at 96.4 (1985=100), down from 103.8 in January. The Present Situation Index decreased to 110.2 from 113.9, while the Expectations Index declined to 87.2 from 97.0 ...


Philadelphia Nonmanufacturing activity increased in February
Posted: February 24, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Responses to this month's Nonmanufacturing Business Outlook Survey suggest that local nonmanufacturing activity increased in February. The survey's indicators for general activity, new orders, and sales or revenues all rebounded from last month's lower readings. Responding firms continue to be optimistic about activity over the next ...


Richmond Fed's Current Activity Index dropped 6 points to a reading of 0
Posted: February 24, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Fifth District manufacturing activity slowed in February, according to the most recent survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Shipments and the volume of new orders flattened, while the backlog of orders declined. Hiring in the sector was weak and the average workweek shrank, although wage growth advanced modestly. Despite the ...


S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices increase 0.1% in December
Posted: February 24, 2015 at 09:00 AM (Tuesday)

S&P Dow Jones Indices today released the latest results for the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices. Data released today for December 2014 shows a slight uptick in home prices across the country. Nine cities reported monthly increases ...


Existing-Home Sales fell 4.9% in January
Posted: February 23, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

Existing-home sales declined in January to their lowest rate in nine months, but the pace was higher than a year ago for the fourth straight month, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions experienced declines in January, with the Northeast and West seeing the ...


Texas Manufacturing Activity Remains Flat
Posted: February 23, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

Texas factory activity posted a second month of no growth in February, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, remained near zero (0.7) and indicated output was essentially unchanged from ...


Chicago Fed National Activity picked up slightly in January
Posted: February 23, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Monday)

Led by improvements in production-related indicators, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) edged up to +0.13 in January from –0.07 in December. Three of the four broad categories of indicators that make up the index increased from December, and only one of the four categories made a negative contribution to the index ...


U.S. Leading Economic Index increased 0.2%
Posted: February 19, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.2 percent in January to 121.1 (2010 = 100), following a 0.4 percent increase in December, and a 0.3 percent increase in November.

The U.S. Leading Economic Index increased again in January, but its pace of growth has moderated in recent months. While the LEI suggests a positive short-term outlook in 2015, the lack of strong momentum in residential construction, along with a weak outlook for new orders ...


Philadelphia January Outlook Suggest Continued Modest Growth
Posted: February 19, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

Firms responding to the Manufacturing Business Outlook Survey indicated continued modest growth in the region’s manufacturing sector in February. Although the current activity index fell for the third consecutive month, it remained positive, and the employment indicator increased from its reading last month. The survey’s future activity index ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by 0.1%
Posted: February 19, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending February 7 2015, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer increased by 0.1 percent to 98.4, extending the positive trend for two weeks in a row, as gains in production indexes topped losses in consumption indexes. All production indexes except auto production posted gains in this week’s business barometer, particularly ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Decrease 21,000 to 283,000
Posted: February 19, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending February 14, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 283,000, a decrease of 21,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 304,000. The 4-week moving average was 283,250, a decrease of 6,500 from the previous week's unrevised average of 289,750. There were no special factors impacting this ...


Treasury International Capital Data for December 2014
Posted: February 18, 2015 at 04:00 PM (Wednesday)

The U.S. Department of the Treasury today released Treasury International Capital (TIC) data for December 2014. The sum total in December of all net foreign acquisitions of long-term securities, short-term U.S. securities, and banking flows was a monthly net TIC outflow of $174.8 billion. Of this, net foreign private outflows were $143.7 ...


Industrial Production increased 0.2%
Capacity Utilization unch% to 79.4%

Posted: February 18, 2015 at 09:15 AM (Wednesday)

Industrial production increased 0.2 percent in January after decreasing 0.3 percent in December. The rates of change in output for September through December are all slightly lower than previously published; even so, production is estimated to have advanced at an annual rate of 4.3 percent in the fourth quarter of last year. In ...


January Housing Starts down 2.0%, Permits down 0.7%
Posted: February 18, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Wednesday)

BUILDING PERMITS
Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in January were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,053,000. This is 0.7 percent (±0.6%) below the revised December rate of 1,060,000, but is 8.1 percent (±2.0%) above the January 2014 estimate of 974,000. Single-family authorizations in January were at a rate ...


Producer Price Index decreased 0.8% in January, ex Fd & Engy down 0.2%
Posted: February 18, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Wednesday)

The Producer Price Index for final demand decreased 0.8 percent in January, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Final demand prices moved down 0.2 percent in both December and November. On an unadjusted basis, the index for final demand was unchanged for the 12 months ended in ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 18, 2015 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 13.2% from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 13, 2015.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 13.2% on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 12% compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 16% from the ...


Builder Confidence fell 2 points in February to 55
Posted: February 17, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes in February fell two points to a level of 55 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today.

Overall, builder sentiment remains fairly solid, with this slight downturn largely attributable to the unusually high snow levels across much of the nation. ...


Empire State Manufacturing Survey Conditions Improve Modestly
Posted: February 17, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

The February 2015 Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that business activity continued to expand at a modest pace for New York manufacturers. The headline general business conditions index edged down two points to 7.8. The new orders index fell five points to 1.2—evidence that orders were flat—while the shipments index climbed to ...


Forecasters Unchanged Outlook for Growth, but Brighter Outlook for Labor Markets
Posted: February 13, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Friday)

The outlook for growth in the U.S. economy over the next three years has changed little from the survey of three months ago, according to 39 forecasters surveyed by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. The forecasters predict real GDP will grow at an annual rate of 2.7 percent this quarter and 3.0 percent next quarter. On an ...


U.S. Import Price Index fell 2.8% in January
Posted: February 13, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

U.S. import prices fell 2.8 percent in January, after declining 1.9 percent in December and 1.8 percent in November, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Decreasing fuel prices drove each of the monthly drops. The price index for U.S. exports decreased 2.0 percent in January, and has not recorded a monthly advance ...


Business Inventories up 0.1% in December
Posted: February 12, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

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 $1,331.2 billion, down 0.9 percent (±0.2%) from November 2014, but were up 0.9 percent (±0.4%) from ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer picked up by 0.2%
Posted: February 12, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending January 31 2015, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer picked up by 0.2 percent to 98.4, after declining for two weeks in a row. The recovery in this week’s barometer is chiefly driven by consumption indexes. Chain store sales rose by a solid 1.5 percent, reversing the weakening trend of the past few weeks. Freight car ...


U.S. Retail Sales for January decrease 0.8%, Ex-Auto down 0.9%
Posted: February 12, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

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 $439.8 billion, a decrease of 0.8 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month, but up 3.3 percent (±0.9%) above January 2014. ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Increase 25,000 to 304,000
Posted: February 12, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending February 7, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 304,000, an increase of 25,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 1,000 from 278,000 to 279,000. The 4-week moving average was 289,750, a decrease of 3,250 from the previous week's revised average. ...


Purchase Apps down, Refi's down in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Posted: February 11, 2015 at 07:00 AM (Wednesday)

Mortgage applications decreased 9.0 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 6, 2015.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 9.0 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 7 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 10 ...


Job Openings were 5.0 million in December
Posted: February 10, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

There were 5.0 million job openings on the last business day of December, little changed from 4.8 million in November, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Hires (5.1 million) and separations (4.9 million) were little changed in December. Within separations, the quits rate (1.9 percent) and the layoffs and discharges rate ...


Wholesale Inventories up 0.1% in December
Posted: February 10, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Tuesday)

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that December 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 $449.8 billion, down 0.4 percent (+/-0.9%)* from the revised November level, but were up 1.4 ...


NFIB Small Business Optimism Index fell 2.5 points to 97.9
Posted: February 10, 2015 at 09:26 AM (Tuesday)

The Small Business Optimism Index fell 2.5 points to 97.9, giving back the December gain that took the Index over 100. Still, the Index indicates that the small business sector is operating in a somewhat “normal” zone. Seven components fell, one was unchanged and 2 rose a bit. Most of the decline was accounted for by expected business ...


Employment Trends Index increased in January to 127.86
Posted: February 9, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Monday)

The Conference Board Employment Trends Index™ (ETI) increased in January. The index now stands at 127.86, up from 127.17 (a downward revision) in December. This represents a 7.6 percent gain in the ETI compared to a year ago.

The Employment Trends Index suggests that strong job growth is likely to continue through the first half of the year. As a result, wage growth will accelerate, thereby increasing pressure on profitability which is already suffering from low productivity growth and the ...


Consumer Credit Increased at an annual rate of 5.50%
Posted: February 6, 2015 at 03:00 PM (Friday)

Consumer credit increased at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5-1/2 percent during the fourth quarter. Revolving credit increased at an annual rate of 3 percent, while nonrevolving credit increased at an annual rate of 6-1/4 percent. In December, consumer credit increased at an annual rate of ...


January Employment increased by 257,000
Unemployment Rate rose to 5.7%

Posted: February 6, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Friday)

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 257,000 in January, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 5.7 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Job gains occurred in retail trade, construction, health care, financial activities, ...


DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer fell by 0.4%
Posted: February 5, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Thursday)

For the week ending January 24 2015, the DJ-BTMU U.S. Business Barometer fell by 0.4 percent to 98.2, extending the weakening trend for two consecutive weeks, as almost all indexes recorded negative performances. Chain store sales dropped by 0.5 percent as onlineonly retailers, electronics, office furniture, and drug stores saw weaker ...


4Q2014 Productivity Growth Decreased 1.8%
Posted: February 5, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

Nonfarm business sector labor productivity decreased at a 1.8 percent annual rate during the fourth quarter of 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, as output increased 3.2 percent and hours worked increased 5.1 percent. (All quarterly percent changes in this release are seasonally adjusted annual rates.) The increase in ...


Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims Increase 11,000 to 278,000
Posted: February 5, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

In the week ending January 31, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 278,000, an increase of 11,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 2,000 from 265,000 to 267,000. The 4-week moving average was 292,750, a decrease of 6,500 from the previous week's revised average. ...


Goods and Services Deficit Increased in December 2014
Posted: February 5, 2015 at 08:30 AM (Thursday)

The Nation’s international trade deficit in goods and services increased to $46.6 billion in December from $39.8 billion in November (revised), as imports increased and exports decreased.

The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, through the Department of Commerce, announced today that the goods and services deficit was $46.6 billion in December, up $6.8 billion from $39.8 billion in November, revised. December exports were $194.9 ...


Challenger Layoffs totaling 53,041 in January
Posted: February 5, 2015 at 07:30 AM (Thursday)

ob cut announcements surged to their highest level in nearly two years, as falling oil prices prompted cost-cutting efforts in energy and related industries. In all, U.S.-based employers announced plans to shed 53,041 jobs from their payrolls to start 2015; with 40 percent of those directly related to ...


ISM Non-Manufacturing Index grew at 56.7%
Posted: February 4, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Wednesday)

Economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in January for the 60th consecutive month, say the nation’s purchasing and supply executives in the latest Non-Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®.

The NMI® registered 56.7 percent in January, 0.2 percentage point higher than the December reading of 56.5 percent. This represents continued growth in the non-manufacturing sector. The Non-Manufacturing Business Activity Index increased to 61.5 percent, which is 2.9 ...


Help Wanted OnLine Labor Demand rose 150,400 to 5,267,100 in January
Posted: February 4, 2015 at 10:00 AM (Wednesday)

Online advertised vacancies rose 150,400 to 5,267,100 in January, according to The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine® (HWOL) Data Series, released today. The December Supply/Demand rate stands at 1.70 unemployed for each advertised vacancy with a total of 3.6 million more unemployed workers than the number of advertised vacancies. The number ...



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