Other News

Food and energy prices soar

In the desserts aisle of a bustling Manhattan grocery store, South Carolina natives Nancy and Keith Huffaker place a box of assorted cookies in their shopping basket. They’ve come out to satisfy their after-dinner sweet tooth and though they admit the prices are higher in New York, they don’t believe […]

Payroll Tax Cut Provides High Price Relief

Effects from the payroll tax cut boosted retail sales, offsetting the impact of higher prices of food and gasoline. Purchases for the month of February were $387.1 billion, representing a 1 percent increase from the previous month, and an 8.9 percent increase compared to the previous year. February was the […]

Public Sector Layoffs Add To Unemployment Rolls

Hiring in key areas of the private sector has been bullish, but increasing layoffs in the private sector are still a major headwind to job growth. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the construction industry, which has been hampered by a weak housing market and bad weather in […]

Trade Deficit Widens due to Unexpected Surge in Imports

The U.S. trade deficit widened by an unexpected 15.1 percent to $46.3 billion in January due to a 5.2 percent jump in imports. Economists surveyed expected a gap of $41.5 billion. Higher purchases of capital goods, industrial supplies and auto pushed imports up to $214.1 billion. Capital goods imports of […]

Feb Jobs Report – Best in 3 years, but no ticker tape just yet…

The Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the US unemployment rate fell to 8.9 percent, nonfarm payrolls increased by 192,000 and 222,000 private-sector jobs were added. Adding to the good news, the January rate was revised to show an increase of 63,000 jobs, from the previous estimate of 36,000. This […]

With Gas Prices Up, New Auto Sales Follow

U.S. auto sales surged by 27 percent in February, as a hike in oil prices sent consumers shopping for more efficient vehicles. With an annualized sales rate of 12.9 million vehicles, the month was one of industry’s strongest in the past year, and exceeded the predictions of most analysts. The […]

Increased Consumer Confidence Could Spell Signs of Recovery

Consumer confidence climbed to its highest level since the early days of the recession in February, outpacing many analysts’ expectations. According to the Conference Board, those saying business conditions were good rose to 12.4 in February from 11.3 in January.  Also, those who felt that jobs were “plentiful” nudged up […]

U.S. GDP Revised Downward for Fourth Quarter

The United States’ economy grew slower than previously thought, said the Commerce Department on Friday. The advance estimate of the real gross domestic product – the overall measure of economic output of  the United States – was 3.2 percent. The economy actually increased at a lower rate, 2.8 percent, said […]

Declining home prices offset rise in sales

Existing home sales increased last month, but declining prices and a high percentage of distressed sales indicate that the housing market faces a long road to recovery. The National Association of Realtors reported Feb. 23 that existing home sales increased 2.7 percent from December 2010 to a seasonally adjusted annual […]

Changes in Building Permit Codes Affected LEI Numbers

The number for January’s Index of Leading Economic Indicator (LEI) came out yesterday and they show that the U.S. is still increasing by 0.1 percent. For some this may look like bad news since the number was a decrease and much lower than those that came out in the last […]