GDP

Durable Goods

April 29, 2016 – Durable goods orders, which are orders to buy products that are expected to last at least 3 years, is an indicator giving us an idea as to how busy factories will be in the near future.  The higher the amount of orders, the more manufacturers work to fill those orders.  As the name suggests, durable orders …

20-City Index

S&P / Case Shiller 20-City Index

April 29, 2016 – The 20-city S&P/Case-Shiller index is a measure of existing home values across 20 metropolitan areas throughout the U.S.  Home values have a broad impact on the economy, including the housing and consumer sectors.  A lack of supply in housing leads to an increase in home prices and can push a lot of buyers, such as first-time …

Gross Domestic Product

Components of GDP Percent Change

April 29, 2016 – GDP, or Gross Domestic Product, is the broadest and most well-known measure of economic activity within a country.  It is the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country over a certain time frame.  When totaling GDP, there are four components we look at:  investment, consumption, government spending, and net exports.  From …

Exports

Imports and Exports

April 20, 2016 – Import and export prices are an inflationary gauge for us to track that tells us whether prices are increasing or decreasing.  Import prices tell us the cost of products that are produced abroad and purchased in the U.S., while exports are goods produced in the U.S. but purchased abroad.  Increasing import prices signal inflationary trends in the …

Consumer Price Index

Consumer Price Index

April 20, 2016 – The Consumer Price Index, or CPI, tells us of any inflationary pressures in the economy. The CPI measures average price levels of a basket of goods and services purchased by consumers. The index starts with a base time period (1982-1984, currently) and shows the overall increase since that time. Interest rates are directly impacted by inflation, …

Change in Nonfarm Payrolls

Change in Nonfarm Payrolls

April 11, 2016 – The employment situation gives us the most comprehensive look at the labor market in the U.S. as we are able to track new jobs, additions or subtractions from the labor force, and the unemployment rate.  An increasing workforce keeps the economy moving forward with more people employed and being paid a wage, which leads to an …

Initial Claims

Initial Claims

April 11, 2016 – First time unemployment claims are tracked by the initial jobless claims report.  Claims are reported on a weekly basis and are used to help gauge conditions in the labor market.  Due to the volatility in reporting claims on a weekly basis, the 4-week moving average is used in determining trends.  Tracking initial claims tells us how …

Factory Orders

Factory Orders

April 5, 2016 – Through factory orders we are able to take a comprehensive look at the manufacturing sector, which represents approximately 12% of the economy.  In addition to tracking big ticket items such as cars, refrigerators, etc. we are also able to see activity for nondurable goods, such as clothing.  Following orders tells us how busy factories will be …

JOLTs since 2000

JOLTs since 2000

April 5, 2016 – The JOLTs report is the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey that enables us to track several trends in evaluating the labor market.  Through JOLTs we are able to see voluntary and involuntary separations from employment in addition to new job openings and hires that have taken place.  By tracking separations, we are able to see …

ISM Nonmanufacturing Index

ISM Nonmanufacturing

April 5, 2016 – The ISM Nonmanufacturing Index helps us in determining overall conditions in the services sector.  When breaking down the services sector, there are many different components we evaluate, namely employment, business activity, new orders, and supplier deliveries.  The nonmanufacturing sector represents a much larger share of the overall economy when compared to the manufacturing sector, making up …