Consumer Spending

Consumer Spending and Personal Income

November 30, 2017 – Consumer spending, measured by Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE), makes up approximately two-thirds of the economy and is a direct measure of purchasing activity.  We see where consumers are spending their dollars, whether it be durable and nondurable goods, or on services.  Changes in the personal income level dictate consumer spending. Personal income rose 0.4% in October, …

Gross Domestic Product

Components of GDP % Change

November 29, 2017 – Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is the broadest measure of economic activity within a country and measures the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country over a certain period.  There are four components GDP is created from:  investment (including residential and nonresidential expenditures), consumption (including durable goods, non-durable goods, and services spending), …

Case-Shiller

S&P / Case-Shiller 20-City Index

November 28, 2017 – 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. The 20-city Case-Shiller index rose a seasonally adjusted 0.5% in September, beating expectations of a 0.4% increase and 0.1% higher than August’s revised …

New Home Sales

New Home Sales

November 27, 2017 – New single-family home sales represent the number of brand new houses that were purchased or committed to being purchased over the course of a month.  This indicator has a trickle-down effect as demand rises for durable goods and consumer spending increases, boosting GDP.  It is also a sign of strength in the consumer balance sheet to …

Durable Goods

Durable Goods Orders

November 22, 2017 – Durable goods orders, which are orders to buy products that are expected to last at least three years, indicates how busy factories will be in the near future.  As the name suggests, durable orders provide a look into demand for equipment along with other big-ticket purchases, such as vehicles and appliances. An increase in capital spending …

Existing Home Sales

Existing Home Sales

November 21, 2017 – Existing home sales provide the number of purchases made for homes, condominiums, and co-ops that have already been built.  Existing home sales give an indication of demand for housing.  While home resales may not generate new construction jobs like those that housing starts do, they have a similar effect on consumer spending as people purchase items …

Housing Starts

Housing Starts

November 17, 2017 – Housing starts track the number of new residential construction projects underway over the course of a month. This indicator has implications for demand in construction spending/jobs, consumer wages, and complimentary sectors such as durable household item sales. Along with building permits, housing starts is considered a leading economic indicator. Housing starts jumped in October to an …

Industrial Production Index

Industrial Production Index

November 16, 2017 – The Industrial Production Index (IPI) measures the manufacturing, electric, mining, and gas industries output on a monthly basis. Industrial production increased 0.9% in October, above the consensus of 0.5%. Manufacturing jumped 1.3%, well above expectations of 0.3% gains while the capacity utilization rate came in at 77.0%, above estimates of 76.3%. Motor vehicle production was a …

Imports and Exports

Imports and Exports

November 16, 2017 – 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. Import prices in October increased 0.2%, below the consensus of 0.5% and down from September’s revised 0.8%. The past 12 months import prices increased by 2.5%.  Export prices …

Consumer Price Index

Consumer Price Index

November 15, 2017 – The Consumer Price Index (CPI) tells us of any inflationary pressures in the economy.  The CPI measures the 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.  As with many economic indicators, it can …