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Economy

Economic Data (USA)

Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of December 26, 2015

Earlier today, the Labor Department released its weekly report on New Jobless Insurance Claims for the week that ended on December 26, 2015:

Predicted: 270,000
Actual: 287,000

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

Last Week (unrevised): 267,000

Click here to view the full Labor Department report.

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Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) for December 2015

The Consumer Confidence Index® (CCI) for this month (December 2015) was released by The Conference Board® this morning:

Predicted: 93.5
Actual: 96.5

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

Every month, The Conference Board sends a questionnaire to 5,000 U.S. households. Survey participants are polled about their feelings regarding the U.S. economy, current and future, and about their own fiscal circumstances. On average, 3,500 participants complete and return the 5-question survey.

The baseline "100" score for the CCI is associated with 1985 survey data.

When consumers feel good about the economy, they tend to do more spending, and vice versa.

Based in New York City, The Conference Board is a private, not-for-profit organization with a mission to, "create and disseminate knowledge about management and the marketplace to help businesses strengthen their performance and better serve society."

The CCI is usually released on the last Tuesday of the month.

Last month, the CCI was 92.6 (revised.)

Click here to view the full Conference Board report.

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Thursday, December 24, 2015

Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of December 19, 2015

Earlier today, the Labor Department released its Weekly Unemployment Insurance Claims report for the week that ended on December 19, 2015:

Predicted: 270,000
Actual: 267,000

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

Last Week (unrevised): 272,000

Click here to view the full Labor Department report.

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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Durable Goods Orders Report for November 2015

The Durable Goods Orders report for November 2015 was released by the Commerce Department this morning:

Predicted: -0.5%
Actual: 0.0%

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Change from 12 months ago: +1.2%

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The  highlighted figure represents the month-to-month change in orders for durable or hard goods for immediate or future delivery from U.S. manufacturers. Examples of durable goods: cars, airplanes, computers, furniture -- items that are built to last at least three years.

The "predicted" figure is what economists and Wall Street forecasters were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure. The Durable Goods Orders report is produced by the Commerce Department.

Click here to view the full Commerce Department report (PDF).

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Personal Income & Consumer Spending Report for November 2015

Earlier today, the Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis released their report on Consumer Spending and Personal Income during November 2015:

Consumer Spending (Personal Consumption Expenditures)
Predicted: +0.3%
Actual: +0.3%

Personal Income
Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.3%

The highlighted percentages represent the month-to-month change in Consumer Spending (aka Personal Consumption Expenditures) and Personal Income for the entire United States.

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Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) Price Index
Predicted: 0.0%
Actual: 0.0%

  • Change from 12 months ago: +0.4%
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Core PCE Price Index
( = PCE Price Index minus food and energy)
Predicted: +0.1%
Actual: 0.1%

  • Change from 12 months ago: +1.3%
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The highlighted percentages represent the month-to-month change in the prices associated with domestic personal consumption.  The PCE Price Index is different from the Consumer Price Index (CPI) in that it is a very broad measure of the prices associated with domestic products and services, while the CPI measures a fixed basket of goods and services.

The broad nature of the PCE Price Index is key to why it is the  Federal Reserve's preferred measure of inflation.  The Federal Open Market Committee FOMC pays very close attention to it.

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The "predicted" figures are what economists and Wall Street forecasters were expecting, while the "actual" figures are the true or real figure.

Click here to view the full Commerce Department report (PDF).

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) "Final" Released Today for Q3, 2015

U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) "final" numbers for the third quarter of 2015 were released this morning by the Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA):

Predicted: +2.0%
Actual: +2.0%

The above percentages represent the quarter-to-quarter change in the Gross Domestic Product for the United States. The "predicted" figure is what economists and Wall Street forecasters were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure. The GDP report is produced by the U.S. Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Today's final GDP report contains the most authoritative data for Q3, 2015.

The GDP is a very broad measure of economic activity for the entire United States, covering all sectors of the economy. The Commerce Department defines real GDP as, "the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States."

Click here to view the full Commerce Department report (PDF).

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Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Consumer Price Index (CPI) for November 2015

Earlier this morning, the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics released the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for November 2015:

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Predicted: 0.0%
Actual: 0.0%

(Change from 12 months ago: +0.5%)

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

Predicted: +0.2%
Actual: +0.2%

(Change from 12 months ago: +2.0%)

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The above figures (highlighted) 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 and Wall Street forecasters 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.)
Click here to view the full Labor Department report.

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Thursday, December 10, 2015

Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of December 5, 2015

Earlier today, the Labor Department released its Weekly Unemployment Insurance Claims report for the week that ended on December 5, 2015:

Predicted: 270,000
Actual: 282,000

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

Last Week (unrevised): 269,000

Click here to view the full Labor Department report.

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Friday, December 04, 2015

Employment Situation Report for November 2015

The Employment Situation Report for November 2015 was released by The Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics this morning:

Nonfarm Payrolls (month-to-month change)
Predicted: +190,000
Actual: +211,000


Unemployment Rate
Predicted: 5.0%
Actual: 5.0%

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

Civilian Labor Force Participation Rate: 62.5%
Previous Month: 62.4%

Average Workweek
Predicted: 34.5 hrs
Actual: 34.5 hrs

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 and Wall Street forecasters were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

From today's report:

"...Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 211,000 in November, about in line with the average monthly gain of 237,000 over the prior 12 months. In November, job growth occurred in construction, professional and technical services, and health care. Employment in mining and information declined over the month...The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for September was revised from +137,000 to +145,000, and the change from October was revised from +271,000 to +298,000. With these revisions, employment gains in September and October combined were 35,000 more than previously reported. Over the past 3 months, job gains have averaged 218,000 per month [Establishment Survey Data]..."

"...the number of unemployed persons, at 7.9 million, was essentially unchanged...The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 2.1 million in November and has shown little movement since June. In November, these individuals accounted for 25.7% of the unemployed...The employment-population ratio was unchanged at 59.3% and has shown little movement since October 2014...there were 594,000 discouraged workers in November, little changed from a year earlier [Household Survey Data]..."

Click here to view the full Department of Labor report

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Thursday, December 03, 2015

New Unemployment Insurance Claims for The Week of November 28, 2015

Earlier today, the Labor Department released the New Unemployment Insurance Claims report for the week that ended on November 28, 2015:

Predicted: 269,000
Actual: 269,000

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

Last Week (unrevised): 260,000

Click here to view the full Labor Department report.

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Tuesday, December 01, 2015

ISM Manufacturing Index for November 2015

Earlier today, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) released their Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI) for November 2015:

Predicted: 50.5%
Actual: 48.6%

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 factory sector contracted.

Last month, the PMI was 50.1%.

The following is a sampling of quotes from a diverse pool of U.S. manufacturers:


    "The oil and gas industry is realizing that [the] ‘low’ oil prices are now the new reality with expectations to continue at this level for some time."
(Petroleum and Coal Products)


    "Still seeing deflation in raw materials."
(Chemical Products)


    "Bookings and new orders are lower than expected."
(Computer and Electronic Products)


    "Automotive remains strong."
(Fabricated Metal Products)


    "Business is still good."
(Transportation Equipment)


    "Downturn in China and European markets are negatively affecting our business."
(Machinery)


    "Strong dollar is slowing our sales to China as they can buy in Europe."
(Primary Metals)


    "Medical device continues to be strong."
(Miscellaneous Manufacturing)


    "Incoming orders have leveled off from the summer."
(Furniture and Related Products)


    "Month-over-month conditions are stable."
(Food, Beverage and Tobacco Products)


Click here to view the complete ISM report.

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