Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey

The JOLTs report is the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, which tracks several trends in evaluating the labor market. Through JOLTs, we can see voluntary and involuntary separations from employment in addition to new job openings and hires that have taken place. While the report provides detailed information about the condition of the labor market, it is not considered …

Chicago PMI

Chicago PMI is a composite index of business conditions in the Chicago area. Data from Chicagoland firms is collected by the financial news firm, Market News International, through manufacturing and non-manufacturing surveys sent to businesses. A drop in demand for goods is reflected in businesses’ responses in the Chicago PMI survey, which, is in turn, reflected in a lower index …

US Initial Jobless Claims

US Initial Jobless Claims, provided by the US Department of Labor, provides underlying data on how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. One can gauge market conditions in the US economy around employment; as more new individuals file for unemployment benefits, fewer individuals in the economy have jobs. In normal times, this means people …

ISM Services

The ISM Services Purchasing Managers Index helps determine the overall economic strength of the services sector.  Components evaluated are employment, business activity, new orders, and supplier deliveries, which are then compiled into an index.  The services sector represents a much larger share of the overall U.S. economy when compared to the manufacturing sector, making up approximately 80% of it; the …

Non-farm Payrolls

ADP Nonfarm Payrolls is a measure of non-farm private sector employment, which is obtained by utilizing an anonymous subset of roughly 400,000 U.S. businesses, which are clients of ADP. Typically, an increase in employment fuels growth in the American economy, while a decrease in employment slows growth. Last month, private sector employment increased by 174,188 to a total of 119.8 …

Consumer Spending and Personal Income

Consumer spending, measured by Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE), makes up approximately two-thirds of the economy and is a direct measure of purchasing activity. PCE is a reliable indication of inflation because it is calculated from data acquired directly from the GDP report and businesses. We see where consumers are spending their dollars, whether it be durable and nondurable goods, or …

US Initial Jobless Claims

US Initial Jobless Claims, provided by the US Department of Labor, provides underlying data on how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. One can gauge market conditions in the US economy around employment; as more new individuals file for unemployment benefits, fewer individuals in the economy have jobs. In normal times, this means people …

Gross Domestic Product

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, nondurable goods, and services spending), government spending, and net …

Durable Goods

Durable goods orders, which are orders to buy products that are expected to last at least three years, indicate 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 and consumer purchases indicates …

Foreign Currencies

Early on in 2020, most foreign currencies followed similar patterns as they fell against the dollar in March as the Coronavirus panic unfolded and investors flocked to relative safety. However, after the dollar spiked, the trend was reversed, and the dollar began falling against most major currencies as the Fed increased the money supply. The DXY, an index tracking the …

Chicago Fed National Activity Index

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) is a weighted average of 85 existing monthly indicators of national economic activity that are divided into four broad categories of data: production & income; employment, unemployment, & hours; personal consumption & housing; and sales, orders, & inventories. It is constructed to have an average value of zero and a standard deviation of one. …

ISM Non-Manufacturing Index

The ISM Services Purchasing Managers Index helps determine the overall economic strength of the services sector.  Components evaluated are employment, business activity, new orders, and supplier deliveries, which are then compiled into an index.  The nonmanufacturing sector represents a much larger share of the overall U.S. economy when compared to the manufacturing sector, making up approximately 80%; the sector’s economic …

US Initial Jobless Claims

US Initial Jobless Claims, provided by the US Department of Labor, provides underlying data on how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. One can gauge market conditions in the US economy around employment; as more new individuals file for unemployment benefits, fewer individuals in the economy have jobs. In normal times, these means people …

Beware of Unemployment Fraud

Fraudulent and imposter unemployment claims have become increasingly more prevalent in the wake of the pandemic and the expansion of jobless benefits by the federal government. Even though unemployment insurance offices have systems in place that stop most fraudulent or impostor claims before they are even processed, some filings may fall through the cracks. There is always a chance you …

Consumer Price Index

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 be volatile from month …

US Initial Jobless Claims

US Initial Jobless Claims, provided by the US Department of Labor, provides underlying data on how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. Given this, one can gauge market conditions in the US economy concerning employment; as more new individuals file for unemployment benefits, fewer individuals in the economy have jobs. Historically, initial jobless claims …

US Initial Jobless Claims

US Initial Jobless Claims, provided by the US Department of Labor, provides underlying data on how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. Given this, one can gauge market conditions in the US economy concerning employment; as more new individuals file for unemployment benefits, fewer individuals in the economy have jobs. Historically, initial jobless claims …

ISM Non-Manufacturing Index

The ISM Non-Manufacturing Index helps determine the overall economic strength of the services sector.  Components evaluated are employment, business activity, new orders, and supplier deliveries, which are then compiled into an index.  The nonmanufacturing sector represents a much larger share of the overall U.S. economy when compared to the manufacturing sector, making up approximately 80%; the sector’s economic weight makes …

Consumer Price Index

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 be volatile from month …

ISM Manufacturing Index

The ISM Manufacturing Index is derived from a survey of purchasing managers and their outlook on overall conditions by looking at factors such as orders for durable goods, industrial production, and hiring. It gives a general direction rather than the specific strength of the factory sector and manufacturing activity in the U.S. A reading above 50 is an indicator that …

Unemployment Rate

The US Unemployment Rate measures the percentage of total employees in the United States that are a part of the labor force but are without a job. It is one of the most widely followed indicators of the health of the US labor market and economy. Historically, the US Unemployment Rate reached as high as 10.80% in 1982 and 9.9% …

Chicago PMI

Chicago PMI is a composite index of business conditions in the Chicago area. Data from Chicagoland firms is collected by the financial news firm, Market News International, through manufacturing and non-manufacturing surveys sent to businesses. A drop in demand for goods is reflected in businesses’ responses in the Chicago PMI survey, which, is in turn, reflected in a lower index …

Personal Consumption Expenditures

Consumer spending, measured by Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE), makes up approximately two-thirds of the economy and is a direct measure of purchasing activity. PCE is a reliable indication of inflation because it is calculated from data acquired directly from the GDP report and businesses. We see where consumers are spending their dollars, whether it be durable and nondurable goods, or …

Existing Home Sales

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 the demand for housing.  While home resales may not generate new construction jobs as housing starts do, they have a similar effect on consumer spending as people purchase items for their new home. Existing …

Producer Price Index

The Producer Price Index (PPI) looks at the average change in selling prices from the viewpoint of domestic producers of both goods and services. Three areas of production are observed: industry-based, commodity-based, and commodity-based final demand-intermediate demand. Investors look to the producer price index, which is a more relevant way of gauging inflation than CPI because of the large basket …

Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey

The JOLTs report is the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey that tracks several trends in evaluating the labor market. Through JOLTs, we can see voluntary and involuntary separations from employment in addition to new job openings and hires that have taken place. Job openings from February to March have decreased 11.61% from 7.0 million to 6.19 million in total. …

U.S. Initial Jobless Claims

US Initial Jobless Claims, provided by the US Department of Labor, provides underlying data on how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. Given this, one can gauge market conditions in the US economy concerning employment; as more new individuals file for unemployment benefits, fewer individuals in the economy have jobs. Historically, initial jobless claims …

Consumer Spending and Personal Income

Consumer spending, measured by Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE), makes up approximately two-thirds of the economy and is a direct measure of purchasing activity. PCE is a reliable indication of inflation because it is calculated from data acquired directly from the GDP report and businesses. We see where consumers are spending their dollars, whether it be durable and non-durable goods, or …

The government definitely wanted to throw a big stick to keep the economy rolling.

It is hard not to start a market update with the following graph.  The economy of the United States is firmly in the hand of the people and their comfort with the state of the Coronavirus.  Ask yourself the following questions: 1.       When would you feel comfortable going to the grocery store? 2.       When would you feel comfortable enough to …

Making Lemonade out of Three COVID Lemons

In light of recent concerns over the economy, we are all worried about the performance of our investment portfolios. The latest pandemic has spiraled the market into a decline that is proving to be unpredictable. With this has come a lot of uncertainty and a few sour lemons. However, there are actions you can take that will help sweeten things …

U.S. Building Permits

US Building Permits, as defined by the Census Bureau, is the approval or authorization by the government to legally work on construction projects in permit-issuing places, in this case, specifically for new privately-owned housing units. An increase in building permits is a leading indicator of the health of the US Housing sector, and often the US economy at large. US …

Housing Starts

Housing starts track the number of new residential construction projects over a month. This indicator has implications for demand in construction spending/jobs, consumer wages, and complementary sectors such as durable household item sales. Along with building permits, housing starts is considered a leading economic indicator. Housing starts fell by -22.25% in March 2020 to an annualized rate of 1.22 million, …

Retail Sales

Retail Sales are the total amount of merchandise and related services sold to consumers. It is considered a sign of strength of U.S. Consumer spending, which accounts for roughly two-thirds of the economy. This indicator also provides insight into which areas of the retail space are experiencing strong sales. Food was excluded in the Retail Sales TTM chart above because of …

Producer Price Index

The Producer Price Index (PPI) looks at the average change in selling prices from the viewpoint of domestic producers of both goods and services. Three areas of production are observed: industry-based, commodity-based, and commodity-based final demand-intermediate demand. Investors look to the producer price index, which is a more relevant way of gauging inflation than CPI because of the large basket …

Consumer Price Index

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 be volatile from month …