Business-Cycle Conditions

Tuesday, August 7th, 2018

The latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the number of open positions in the private sector was essentially unchanged in June, holding at a very high level. Overall, the data relating to the labor market continue to show strength.

Friday, August 3rd, 2018

U.S. nonfarm payrolls added 157,000 jobs in July, below consensus expectations. However, job creation appears to have reaccelerated over the past ten months, supporting gains in hourly earnings. Overall, the report was upbeat.

Wednesday, August 1st, 2018

The Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index registered a 58.1 percent reading in July, down from 60.2 in June. Despite the pullback, the index remains well above neutral and is a positive sign for the manufacturing sector.

Tuesday, July 31st, 2018

Total compensation costs for all civilian workers rose 0.6 percent in the second quarter, less than the 0.8 percent rise in the first quarter. Compensation-costs increases have trended higher in recent years however, the rate of increase remains moderate by historical measures.

Friday, July 27th, 2018

Real gross domestic product rose at a 4.1 percent annualized rate in the second quarter, up from a revised 2.2 percent pace in the first quarter, while consumer-price increases decelerated in the second quarter. Overall, the very solid report suggests the U.S. economic expansion remains healthy.

Thursday, July 26th, 2018

New orders for durable goods jumped 1.0 percent in June while new orders for core capital goods rose 0.6 percent. Both are showing strong uptrends over the past two years. 

Wednesday, July 25th, 2018

Sales of new and existing single-family homes fell in June as inventories rose, boosting the supply of homes on the market, measured in months. Still, the economy overall remains very healthy.

Thursday, July 19th, 2018

Initial claims for unemployment insurance fell to 207,000 for the latest week, the lowest reading since 1969, while the Leading Economic Index from The Conference Board posted a 0.5 percent increase in June. Overall, the preponderance of data support an upbeat outlook for the U.S. economy.

Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

Housing construction fell in June as single-family and multifamily starts declined. Housing permits, an indicator of future activity, also fell in the latest month. Overall, housing construction and permits appear to be plateauing after rebounding from the housing boom-bust cycle in the early 2000s.

Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

Industrial production jumped 0.6 percent in June on broad-based gains. Along with other solid economic data and very strong readings from the AIER leading indicators index, the outlook for continued economic expansion remains favorable.

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

The latest survey from the National Federation of Independent Business shows small-business confidence remains very high, supported by favorable expectations for the economy and future sales. However, the lack of qualified candidates for open positions is a major concern.

Friday, July 6th, 2018

Payrolls in the United States rose by 213,000 in June on widespread gains among industries. Combined with other strong economic data and the positive results from the AIER Index of Leading Indicators, today’s report suggests a positive outlook for the current expansion.

Wednesday, June 27th, 2018

New orders for durable goods fell 0.6 percent in May. However, orders have been on a solid rising trend over the past two years and recent declines do not appear to suggest that the rising trend is in danger.

Tuesday, June 26th, 2018

Despite a slight dip in June, consumer confidence remains at historically favorable levels suggesting ongoing economic expansion in the short term. However, consumers’ expectations may be plateauing, possibly reflecting escalating trade tensions.

Wednesday, June 20th, 2018

Sales of existing homes fell 0.4 percent in May to a 5.43 million-unit annual rate versus a 5.45 million pace in April, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales have been in a flat trend recently, held back by limited inventory.

Thursday, June 14th, 2018

Retail sales posted the third strong monthly gain in a row following weak performances in January and February. Combining these data with strong readings from the AIER Leading Indicators index, the outlook for the economy remains upbeat.



Friday, June 1st, 2018

Payrolls in the United States rose by 223,000 in May, solidly beating an expected rise of 188,000. Gains in the labor market have accelerated recently, reducing fears of a pending slowdown, yet the increases remain modest by historical comparison, suggesting that the slower and somewhat steadier gains of the current cycle may help prolong the expansion.

Tuesday, May 15th, 2018

Retail sales rose 0.3 percent in April following a 0.8 percent increase in March. The April gain suggests that second-quarter GDP growth is off to a solid start.

Tuesday, May 8th, 2018

Total job openings in the United States rose to a record 6.550 million in March while private-sector job openings totaled 5.928 million. Overall, the data relating to the labor market continue to show strength with payrolls rising, few layoffs, rising quits, and a declining number of available workers per opening. 

Monday, April 30th, 2018

It was this time ten years ago that people started to catch on that something was going wrong. Home prices stopped rising, many were falling, the flipping schemes were dying out, and default notices were being posted for smaller banking houses. Could it be that the entire glory days of the spectacular increases in home prices were coming to an end? Denial was still in the air.