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Economy

Economic Data (USA)

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Leading Economic Index for July 2019

The Conference Board® released its Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for July 2019 this morning:

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Index for July: 112.2 (The baseline 100 score is associated with 2016 data.)

Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.538% (+0.6 point)

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  • Index for June 2019: 111.6

  • Index for May 2019: 111.7

  • Index for April 2019: 111.8

  • Index for March 2019: 111.7

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The yellow-highlighted percentage is the month-to-month change for the index.  The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

The LEI is a composite of 10 of the nation's economic data releases that's put together by The Conference Board. Statistically, the components listed below have shown a significant increase or decrease before national economic upturns or downturns:


  1. The Standard + Poor's 500 Index

  2. Average weekly claims for unemployment insurance

  3. Building permits for new private housing

  4. The interest rate spread between the yield on the benchmark 10-Year Treasury Note and Federal Funds

  5. ISM® Index of New Orders

  6. Manufacturer's new orders for consumer goods or materials

  7. Manufacturers' new orders, nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft orders

  8. Average weekly manufacturing hours

  9. Average consumer expectations for business conditions

  10. Leading Credit Index™

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Chart: Leading Economic Index - July 2019 Update
Chart: Leading Economic Index - July 2019 Update
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From Today's Report:

"...'The US LEI increased in July, following back-to-back modest declines. Housing permits, unemployment insurance claims, stock prices and the Leading Credit Index were the major drivers of the improvement,' said Ataman Ozyildirim, Senior Director of Economic Research at The Conference Board. 'However, the manufacturing sector continues exhibiting signs of weakness and the yield spread was negative for a second consecutive month. While the LEI suggests the US economy will continue to expand in the second half of 2019, it is likely to do so at a moderate pace.'..."

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New Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of August 17, 2019

Earlier today, the Labor Department released its weekly report on New Jobless Insurance Claims for the week that ended on August 17, 2019:

Predicted: 216,000
Actual: 209,000

The yellow-highlighted figure represents the number of first-time claims for unemployment benefits for the entire United States. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

  • Previous Week (revised): 221,000
  • 4-Week Moving Average: 214,500
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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Crude Oil Inventories Report for Week of August 16, 2019

The U.S. Crude Oil Inventories report for the week that ended on August 16, 2019 was released this morning:

-- Change from Last Week: -2,700,000 Barrels

-- Change from A Year Ago (Y/Y): +29,400,000 Barrels

-- Current U.S. Crude Oil Stocks: 437,800,000 Barrels

Diminishing crude oil inventories often translate to higher crude oil prices (and vice versa), but not always.

The report is produced by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

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Existing Home Sales - July 2019

The Existing Home Sales report for July 2019 was released by The National Association of Realtors® (NAR®) this morning:

Predicted: 5,385,000
Actual: 5,420,000

  •  Change from Previous Month: +2.5%

  •  Change from One Year Previous: +0.6%
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Inventory: 1,890,000 (4.2 months supply)

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The yellow-highlighted, "actual" figure above represents the preliminary, seasonally adjusted annualized sales count of existing homes, co-ops and condominiums for the indicated month. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

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Median Price for A Used Home During July 2019: $280,800

Change from One Year Previous: +4.3%

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Average Price for A Used Home During July 2019: $317,100

Change from One Year Previous: +3.1%

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From Today's Report:


"...Existing-home sales strengthened in July, a positive reversal after total sales were down slightly in the previous month, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Although Northeast transactions declined, the other three major U.S. regions recorded sales increases, including vast growth in the West last month.

Total existing-home sales, http://economy.fedprimerate.com/search/label/existing_home_sales, completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 2.5% from June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.42 million in July. Overall sales are up 0.6% from a year ago (5.39 million in July 2018).

'Falling mortgage rates are improving housing affordability and nudging buyers into the market,' said
Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. However, he added that the supply of affordable housing is severely low. 'The shortage of lower-priced homes have markedly pushed up home prices.'

Home price appreciation has been much stronger in the lower-price tier compared to homes sold in the upper-price tier, based on the analysis of proprietary deed records data from Black Knight, Inc. and Realtors Property Resource®.

Of the same homes that were sold in 2018 that were purchased in 2012 in 13 large metro areas (repeat sales transactions), the lower half of the market had increased by more than 100% in 2018 in metro areas like Atlanta-Sandy-Springs-Roswell, Ga. (165%), Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colo. (103%), Miami-Fort-Lauderdale, Fla. (119%) and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla. (125%). The median home price for homes purchased in the upper half of the market in these same metro areas in 2012 increased at a much slower pace when sold in 2018.

'Clearly, the inventory of moderately-priced homes is inadequate and more home building is needed,' said Yun. 'Some new apartments could be converted into condominiums thereby helping with the supply, especially in light of new federal rules permitting a wider use of Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgages to buy condo properties.'

The
median existing-home price for all housing types in July was $280,800, up 4.3% from July 2018 ($269,300). July’s price increase marks the 89th straight month of year-over-year gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of July decreased to 1.89 million, down from 1.92 million existing-homes available for sale in June, and a 1.6% decrease from 1.92 million one year ago. Unsold inventory is at a 4.2-month supply at the current sales pace, down from the 4.4 month-supply recorded in June and down from the 4.3-month supply recorded in July of 2018.

Properties typically remained on the market for 29 days in July, up from 27 days in June and up from 27 days in July of 2018. Fifty-one percent of homes sold in July were on the market for less than a month.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage decreased to 3.77% in July, down from 3.80% in June. The average commitment rate across all of 2018 was 4.54%.

'Mortgage rates are important to consumers, but so is confidence about the nation’s overall economic outlook,' Yun continued. 'Home buying is a serious long term decision and current low or even lower future mortgage rates may not in themselves meaningfully boost sales unless accompanied by improved consumer confidence.'

First-time buyers were responsible for 32% of sales in July, down from 35% the month prior and about equal to the 32% recorded in July 2018. NAR’s 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers –
released in late 2018 – revealed that the annual share of first-time buyers was 33%.

As the share of first-time buyers rose, individual investors or second-home buyers, who account for many cash sales purchased 11% of homes in July, up from 10% recorded in June 2019 and down from 12% recorded in July a year ago. All-cash sales accounted for 19% of transactions in July, up from June and down from July of 2018 (16% and 20%, respectively).

Distressed sales – foreclosures and short sales – represented 2% of sales in July, unchanged from June but down from 3% in July 2018. Less than 1% of July 2019 sales were short sales.

'Present rates have opened the market for a number of potential buyers who couldn’t afford a home just a year ago,' said NAR President John Smaby, a second-generation Realtor® from Edina, Minnesota, and broker at Edina Realty. 'Additionally, NAR has been working with the FHA for years to establish new condominium loan policies. Our hard work has paid off, and this change will begin benefiting buyers, sellers and our members as soon as this fall.'
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Friday, August 16, 2019

Housing Starts During July 2019

The U.S. Commerce Department this morning released its Housing Starts report for July 2019:

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Housing Starts:
Predicted: 1,259,000
Actual: 1,191,000

Change From Previous Month: -4.0%
Change From One Year Previous: +0.6%

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Building Permits:
Predicted: 1,270,000
Actual: 1,336,000

Change From Previous Month: +8.4%
Change From One Year Previous: +1.5%

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Housing Starts: The top, yellow-highlighted figure is a measure of initial construction of single and multi-family residential units in the United States for the indicated month. Seasonally adjusted annual rate. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

If you're wondering about the demand for new homes in the United States, or about the American residential construction industry in general, then you should pay attention to the monthly Housing Starts report. This report also offers insight into specific types of consumer spending: when housing starts are up, demand for the stuff that a consumer would purchase for a new home (large appliances, consumer electronics, furniture, etc.) tends to also rise -- and vice versa.



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Chart: Housing Starts - July 2019 Update
Chart: Housing Starts - July 2019 Update
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Thursday, August 15, 2019

Industrial Production + Manufacturing + Capacity Utilization During July 2019

The Industrial Production, Manufacturing and Capacity Utilization numbers for July 2019 were released by the Federal Reserve this morning:

Industrial Production:
Predicted: +0.1%
Actual: -0.2%

Manufacturing:
Predicted: -0.1%
Actual: -0.4%

The yellow-highlighted percentages represent the month-to-month change in manufacturing, and physical output from mining operations, utility plants and factories for the entire United States.

Capacity Utilization Rate:
Predicted: 77.8%
Actual: 77.5

The Capacity Utilization Rate represents the use of available resources at mining operations, utility plants and factories for the entire United States last month.

The "predicted" figures are what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

From today's report:

"...Industrial production declined 0.2 percent in July. Manufacturing output decreased 0.4 percent last month and has fallen more than 1-1/2 percent since December 2018. In July, mining output fell 1.8 percent, as Hurricane Barry caused a sharp but temporary decline in oil extraction in the Gulf of Mexico. The index for utilities rose 3.1 percent. At 109.2 percent of its 2012 average, total industrial production was 0.5 percent higher in July than it was a year earlier. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector decreased 0.3 percentage point in July to 77.5 percent, a rate that is 2.3 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2018) average..."

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Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey for August 2019

Earlier today, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia released its diffuse index of current manufacturing conditions for this month (August 2019):

Predicted: +11.1
Actual: +16.8

The "actual" figure above is an index of current manufacturing conditions within the Federal Reserve's Third District, which includes eastern Pennsylvania, all of Delaware and the southern half of New Jersey. Any figure below zero implies that manufacturing in the region is contracting, while a figure above zero implies expansion.

The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.
 
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Chart: Philadelphia Fed Current and Future General Activities Indexes - August 2019
Chart: Philadelphia Fed Current and Future General Activities Indexes - August 2019

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  • Last month, the actual figure was +21.8.

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For a national perspective of manufacturing conditions, check out the Institute of Supply Management's Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI).



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U.S. Retail And Food Services Sales Report for July 2019

The Commerce Department this morning released advance estimates of U.S. Retail and Food Services Sales for July 2019:

Predicted: +0.3%
Actual: +0.703% (+$3,654,000,000)

The yellow-highlighted percentage represents the month-to-month change in total sales receipts for retailers that sell durable and non-durable goods, and retailers that provide food and beverage services.

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  • Estimated Retail Sales During July 2019: $523,514,000,000
  • Change From 12 Months Previous: +3.448% (+$17,448,000,000)

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Chart: Retail Sales - July 2019 Update
Chart: Retail Sales - July 2019 Update

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New Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of August 10, 2019

Earlier today, the Labor Department released its weekly report on New Jobless Insurance Claims for the week that ended on August 10, 2019:

Predicted: 208,000
Actual: 220,000

The yellow-highlighted figure represents the number of first-time claims for unemployment benefits for the entire United States. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

  • Previous Week (revised): 211,000
  • 4-Week Moving Average: 213,750
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Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Import and Export Price Indexes for July 2019

The Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics this morning released its report on U.S. Import and Export Price Indexes for July 2019:

Import Prices
Predicted: -0.1%
Actual: +0.2%

Change From 12 Months Previous: -1.8%

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Export Prices
Predicted: -0.1%
Actual: +0.2%

Change From 12 Months Previous: -0.9%

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The above percentages, highlighted in yellow, represent the month-to-month change in prices for:

  • Imports: the cost of goods produced in other countries and sold in the United States.
  • Exports: the cost of goods produced in the USA and sold in other countries.

Together, these indexes offer insight into the status of inflation in the United States, and for the global economy as well. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.


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Crude Oil Inventories Report for Week of August 9, 2019

The U.S. Crude Oil Inventories report for the week that ended on August 9, 2019 was released this morning:

-- Change from Last Week: +1,600,000 Barrels

-- Change from A Year Ago (Y/Y): +26,300,000 Barrels

-- Current U.S. Crude Oil Stocks: 440,500,000 Barrels

Diminishing crude oil inventories often translate to higher crude oil prices (and vice versa), but not always.

The report is produced by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).



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Tuesday, August 13, 2019

NFIB Small Business Optimism Index for July 2019

The National Federation of Independent Business® (NFIB®) released its Small Business Optimism Index (SBOI) for July 2019:

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Predicted: 103.0
Actual: 104.7

  • Change from Previous Month: +1.355% (+1.4 points)
  • Change from 12 Months Previous: -2.966% (-3.2 points)

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  • The previous month's SBOI reading was 103.3

  • The July 2018 SBOI reading was 107.9

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Chart: NFIB Small Business Optimism Index - July 2019 Update
Chart: NFIB Small Business Optimism Index - July 2019 Update

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From Today's Report:


"...Optimism among small business owners bounced back in July as expectations for business conditions, real sales, and expansion made solid gains. The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index rose 1.4 points to 104.7, with seven of 10 components advancing, two falling, and one remaining unchanged. The Uncertainty Index fell 10 points, reversing a surge in June that reached the highest level since March 2017.

'While many are talking about a slowing economy and possible signs of a recession, the 3rd largest economy in the world continues to defy expectations, generating output, creating value, and expanding the economy,' said NFIB President and CEO Juanita D. Duggan. 'Small business owners want to grow their operations, and the only thing stopping them is finding qualified workers.'

In addition to improvement in expectations for business conditions, real sales, and expansion, key findings from the July index include:

  • Small business owners’ plans to create new jobs and make capital outlays advanced and earnings trends improved, supported by a solid improvement in sales trends.
  • Plans to order new inventories posted a solid gain.
  • After surging last month, reports of higher average selling prices stabilized, with no evidence of a pickup in inflation.
  • Credit conditions remain very supportive, interest rates on loans are historically low, and there are few complaints about credit availability.

'Contrary to the narrative about impending economic doom, the small business sector remains exceptional. This month’s index is a confirmation that small business owners remain very optimistic about the economy but are being hamstrung by not finding the workers they need,' said NFIB Chief Economist William Dunkelberg.
.."

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  • Small business survey questions can be found at the end of today's report.
  • The baseline "100" score is associated with 1986 survey data.
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Consumer Price Index (CPI) for July 2019

Earlier this morning, the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics released the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for July 2019:

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Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.3% 

  • Change From 12 Months Previous: +1.8%

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Below is the CPI when food and energy are removed, also known as core CPI:

Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.3%

  • Change From 12 Months Previous: +2.2%

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The above, yellow-highlighted figures represent the seasonally adjusted, month-to-month change in prices for a specific group of goods and services that consumers buy, and is, therefore, a very important part of the overall inflation picture for the country.

The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

General categories that constitute the CPI are:

  • Healthcare
  • Housing
  • Clothing
  • Communications
  • Education
  • Transportation
  • Food and Beverages
  • Recreation
  • Miscellaneous Goods and Services (grooming expenses, etc.)

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From Today's Report:

"...Increases in the indexes for gasoline and shelter were the major factors in the seasonally adjusted all items monthly increase. The energy index rose in July as the gasoline and electricity indexes increased, though the natural gas index declined. The index for food was unchanged for the second month in a row, as a decline in the food at home index was offset by an increase in the food away from home index.

The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 in July, the same increase as in June. The July rise was broad-based, with increases in the indexes for shelter, medical care, airline fares, household furnishings and operations, apparel, and personal care all contributing to the increase. The index for new vehicles was one of the few to decline in July..."

 
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Chart: Consumer Price Index (CPI) - July 2019 Update
Chart: Consumer Price Index (CPI) - July 2019 Update

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Friday, August 09, 2019

Producer Price Index - Final Demand (PPI-FD) for July 2019

The Producer Price Index - Final Demand (PPI-FD) for July 2019 was released this morning:

Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.2%

Change from 12 months previous:  +1.7%

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Below is the PPI-FD when food, energy and trade services are removed:

Predicted: +0.2%
Actual:  -0.1%

Change from 12 months previous:  +1.7%

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The above, yellow-highlighted percentages represent the month-to-month change in prices received by domestic producers of goods and services, for goods, services and construction in the United States, for final demand.

Final Demand = personal consumption (consumers), exports, government purchases and capital investment.

The PPI-FD is released by the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.


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Thursday, August 08, 2019

New Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of August 3, 2019

Earlier today, the Labor Department released its weekly report on New Jobless Insurance Claims for the week that ended on August 3, 2019:

Predicted: 215,000
Actual: 209,000

The yellow-highlighted figure represents the number of first-time claims for unemployment benefits for the entire United States. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

  • Previous Week (revised): 217,000
  • 4-Week Moving Average: 212,250
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Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Crude Oil Inventories Report for Week of August 2, 2019

The U.S. Crude Oil Inventories report for the week that ended on August 2, 2019 was released this morning:

-- Change from Last Week: +2,400,000 Barrels

-- Change from A Year Ago (Y/Y): +31,500,000 Barrels

-- Current U.S. Crude Oil Stocks: 438,900,000 Barrels

Diminishing crude oil inventories often translate to higher crude oil prices (and vice versa), but not always.

The report is produced by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

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Tuesday, August 06, 2019

Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) for June 2019

The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) for June 2019 was released by the Labor Department this morning:

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Job Openings

Predicted: 7,293,000
Actual:    7,348,000

  • Previous Month (revised): 7,384,000

  • One Year Previous: 7,393,000

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Hires: 5,702,000

Total Separations: 5,481,000

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The above, yellow-highlighted percentage represents the estimated number of job openings in the United States during the indicated month. The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

Here's how the Labor Department defines Total Separations:

"Total separations includes quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations. Total separations is referred to as turnover. Quits are generally voluntary separations initiated by the employee. Therefore, the quits rate can serve as a measure of workers’ willingness or ability to leave jobs. Layoffs and discharges are involuntary separations initiated by the employer. Other separations includes separations due to retirement, death, disability, and transfers to other locations of the same firm."

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Chart: Job Openings, Hires and Separations - June 2019 Update
Chart: Job Openings, Hires and Separations - June 2019 Update

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Monday, August 05, 2019

ISM Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI®) for July 2019

Earlier today, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM®) released their Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI®) for July 2019:

Predicted: 55.5%
Actual: 53.7% (-1.4 points month-on-month change)

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Previous month: 55.1%

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The NMI is a reliable barometer of the U.S. services sector; above 50% implies expansion, while a reading below 50% implies that the services sector contracted.

Service Categories Include: Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing + Hunting; Mining; Utilities; Construction; Wholesale Trade; Retail Trade; Transportation + Warehousing; Information; Finance + Insurance; Real Estate, Rental + Leasing; Professional, Scientific + Technical Services; Management of Companies + Support Services; Educational Services; Health Care + Social Assistance; Arts, Entertainment + Recreation; Accommodation + Food Services; Public Administration; and Other Services (services such as Equipment + Machinery Repairing; Promoting or Administering Religious Activities; Grantmaking; Advocacy; and Providing Dry-Cleaning + Laundry Services, Personal Care Services, Death Care Services, Pet Care Services, Photofinishing Services, Temporary Parking Services, and Dating Services).

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From today' report:

"...Economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in July for the 114th consecutive month, say the nation’s purchasing and supply executives in the latest Non-Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®..."

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Here's a sampling of comments made by survey participants:

  •    “Business is still strong, considering the seasonality.”
     (Accommodation + Food Services)

  •     “Business volumes were flat compared to the previous month.”
     (Health Care + Social Assistance)

  •     “Tariffs continue to push costs higher, and customers are looking for more discounts due to mortgage-rate fluctuations.”
     (Construction)

  •     “Some uncertainty hinges on tariffs, but there have been no changes in market conditions.”
     (Information)

  •     “For our company, July is looking to be a record-setting month for sales. Customers have been converting quotes to sales quicker than in past months. The tariffs have increased prices for our industry, but our clients are not balking at the slight price increases that have been passed along. We feel that (the third quarter) will be strong.”
     (Management of Companies + Support Services)

  •     “It appears that the mining capital-expense environment is improving, with a good prospectus for the coming months. Our dependence on Chinese and Asian supply chains remains strong. NAFTA countries do not have the same capacity and speed.”
     (Mining)

  •     “Companies involved in the oil and gas industry remain cautious relative to hiring direct employees and contingent workers, as well as investing in new capital projects. Volatility in oil price and geopolitical concerns are driving this wait-and-see approach.”
     (Professional, Scientific + Technical Services)

  •     “Demand seems strong. There are still pressures for skilled labor. It is difficult to find fully qualified candidates. Suppliers are having trouble with demand.”
     (Public Administration)

  •     “As our corporate objectives drive us more and more into digitization, advanced analytics, and data management in general, we are finding it increasingly difficult to find, develop and retain professional with advanced skills in these disciplines.”
     (Retail Trade)

  •     “Business is somewhat slow for the first half of 2019, but it is expected to pick up for the second half.”
     (Wholesale Trade)

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ISM Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI®) - 12 Month History - July 2019 Update
ISM Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI®) - 12 Month History
July 2019 Update

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Friday, August 02, 2019

Employment Situation Report for July 2019

The Employment Situation Report for July 2019 was released by The Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics this morning:

Nonfarm Payrolls (month-to-month change)
Predicted: +151,000
Actual: +164,000


U-3 Unemployment Rate (Headline)
Actual: 3.7%
Previous Month: 3.7%
12 Months Previous: 3.9%

U-6 Unemployment Rate*
Actual: 7.0%
Previous Month: 7.2%
12 Months Previous: 7.5%

Average Hourly Earnings (month-to-month change)
Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.287% (+$0.08)

Average Hourly Earnings (year-on-year change)
Predicted: +3.1%
Actual: +3.209% (+$0.87)

Average Weekly Earnings (month-to-month change)
Actual: -0.0052% (-$0.05)


Average Weekly Earnings (year-on-year change)
Actual: +2.61% (+$24.41)

Civilian Labor Force Participation Rate: 63.0%
Previous Month: 62.9%
12 Months Previous: 62.9%

Average Workweek
Predicted: 34.4 hours
Actual: 34.3 hours

Economist, academics, central bankers and investors pay very close attention to the monthly Employment Situation report as it offers penetrating insight as to the current and near-future state of the overall U.S. economy. If a) Americans are earning more money and b) the economy is creating new jobs, this typically translates to more money being pumped into the economy (and vice versa.)

The "predicted" figure is what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

From today's report:

"... In July, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 8 cents
[+0.287%] to $27.98, following an 8-cent gain in June. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by [+3.209%]. In July, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees rose by 4 cents [+0.171%] to $23.46.

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for May was revised down by 10,000 from +72,000 to +62,000, and the change for June was revised down by 31,000 from +224,000 to +193,000. With these revisions, employment gains in May and June combined were 41,000 less than previously reported. (Monthly revisions result from additional reports received from businesses and government agencies since the last published estimates and from the recalculation of seasonal factors.) After revisions, job gains have averaged +140,000 per month over the last 3 months.
After revisions, job gains have averaged 140,000 per month over the last 3 months..." [Establishment Survey Data]
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 * =  The U-6 Unemployment Rate is defined as:

"Total unemployed, plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force."


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Thursday, August 01, 2019

ISM Manufacturing Index for July 2019

Earlier today, the Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) released their Manufacturing Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI®) for July 2019:

Predicted: 51.9%
Actual: 51.2% (-0.5 point month-on-month change)

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Previous month: 51.7%

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Every month, the ISM surveys purchasing and supply executives at hundreds of companies across the country who are involved in manufacturing in some form. The resulting index is watched closely by academics, economists and investors because manufacturing accounts for about 12% of U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The PMI is a reliable barometer of U.S. manufacturing: A PMI above 50% implies that U.S. manufacturing expanded during the month specified, while a reading below 50% implies that the made-in-the-USA sector contracted.

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From Today's Report:

"...Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in July, and the overall economy grew for the 123RD consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®..."
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The following is a sampling of quotes from a diverse pool of U.S. manufacturers:



  •     'General business trends are continuing to show signs of weakness resulting from tariffs and cost impacts of importing and exporting.'
     (Electrical Equipment, Appliances + Components)

  •     'Business is strong mostly due to seasonality. Tariffs surcharges are now being passed through to all customers. Labor is tight, putting pressure on wages costs.'
     (Furniture + Related Products)

  •     'All aspects of business remain strong, but we’re starting to see the frictional effect of tariffs on exports.'
     (Plastics + Rubber Products)

  •     'We are a third-tier supplier to [a major aircraft manufacturer], and it appears its production slowdown of [an aircraft] is having a direct effect on our slowing orders.'
     (Miscellaneous Manufacturing)

  •     'Business has slowed, but it is still steady and expected to pick up next month.'
     (Machinery)

  •     'There is a drop in demand for steel products, which has had a major impact on steel prices and the domestic scrap market.'
     (Fabricated Metal Products)

  •     'The economy is holding steady. All the uncertainty seems to be priced in accordingly, and supply plans are consistent throughout 2019. Business conditions improving yet still facing headwinds in foreign exchange, commodities, and certain direct materials."
     (Food, Beverage + Tobacco Products)

  •     '[Automotive] sales continue to decline, and forecasts have been reduced due to softer predicted demand. Attention to product cost — not sales price — is increasing.'
     (Transportation Equipment)

  •     'Weakness in end markets accelerating rapidly. Continuing to reduce production based on weakening demand and declining current orders.'
     (Chemical Products)

  •     'China tariffs continue to be a concern. The uncertainty of future tariffs involving China, Canada, and Mexico is also a concern. China tariffs for electronic parts are averaging 17 percent.'
     (Computer + Electronic Products)
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ISM Manufacturing Index - 12 Month History - July 2019 Update
ISM Manufacturing Index - 12 Month History - July 2019 Update

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