• Real GDP increased at an annual rate of 1.9% in the fourth quarter of 2016, after increasing 3.5% in the previous quarter, according to the “advance” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
  • Real final sales of domestic product increased 0.9%, following a 3.0% increase in the previous quarter.
  • The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 2.0% in the fourth quarter, compared to an increase of 1.5% in the previous quarter.  The price index for personal consumption expenditures increased 2.2%, compared with an increase of 1.5% in the previous quarter.
  • Real GDP increased 1.6% in the year 2016, compared with an increase of 2.6% in 2015. The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 1.0% in 2016, compared to an increase of 0.4% in 2015.
  • Current-dollar GDP increased 2.9% in 2016 to a level of $18,566.9 billion, compared with an increase of 3.7% in 2015.
  • New orders for manufactured durable goods decreased 0.4% in December, while shipments increased 1.4%. New orders in the year 2016 were down 0.3% from 2015, while shipments were down 0.5%.
  • December existing home sales decreased 2.8% to an annualized rate of 5.49 million units, according to the National Association of Realtors. The December figure was 0.7 % above the December 2015 figure. The median sales price of existing houses sold was $232.2 thousand, 4.0% above December 2015. The housing inventory at the end of December dropped 10.8% to 1.65 million existing homes for sale. Sales were at 5.45 million units for the year 2016, the highest since 2006.
  • December new home sales decreased 10.4% to an annualized rate of 536 thousand units, following a 4.7% increase in the previous month. The December figure was 0.4% below the December 2015 figure.  The median sales price of new houses sold was $322.5 thousand, 7.9% above December 2015. Sales were 563 thousand units in the year 2016, 12.2% above the previous year.
  • U.S. House prices rose 0.5% on a seasonally adjusted basis from October to November, after increasing 0.3% in the previous period, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) monthly House Price Index. For the 12 months ending in November, U.S. prices rose 6.1%.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed fixed mortgage rates moving higher from the previous week. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 4.19% for the week ending January 24, up from last week when it averaged 4.09%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year fixed-rate averaged 3.79%.
  • Mortgage applications increased 4.0% from a week earlier week, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending January 20.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance increased by 22 thousand to 259 thousand in the week ending January 21. The 4-week moving average was 245.5 thousand, a decrease of 2 thousand from the previous week’s revised average.
  • The Conference Board index of leading economic indicators increased sharply in December for the fourth consecutive month. The leading index increased 0.5% in December, following a 0.1% increase in November. Over the last six months of 2016, the index grew 1.4% (about 2.8% annual rate)., much faster than the growth of 0.2% over the first half of the year.
  • The Conference Board coincident economic index increased 0.3% in December, after holding steady in November. The coincident index rose 1.0% (about 2.0% annual rate) during the last six months of 2016, faster than the growth of 0.6% over the first half of the year.
  • The Chicago FED National Activity Index increased to positive 0.14 in December, from negative 0.33 in November. The index’s three-month moving average was negative 0.07, compared with negative 0.14 in November.
  • The Chicago FED’s National Financial Conditions Index was negative 0.79 in the week ending January 20, remaining at its lowest level since July 2015.
  • Fifth District manufacturing activity and service sector activity both strengthen in January, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  • The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment was 98.5 in January 2017, up from 98.2 in December. The index was 92.0 in January of 2016. The index for current economic conditions edged down to 111.3, from 111.9 in December, while the index of consumer expectations increased to 90.3 from 89.5.

 

  • Total Industrial production increased 0.8% in December, following a 0.7% decline in the previous month. The index was 0.5% above the level in December 2015. The manufacturing index was up 0.2% in December, while the index for utilities was up 6.6%. The index for mining held steady in December. Total Industrial production decreased 1.0% in the year 2016, while the manufacturing output increased 0.1%.
  • The rate of capacity utilization for total industry was 75.5% in December. compared with 74.9 in November, and 80.0 as the average of the 1972-2015 period.
  • Finance and insurance (9.0%), wholesale trade (8.3%) and information services (8.6%) were the leading contributors to the increase in U.S. economic growth in the third quarter of 2016, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting (15.1%) and utilities (14.2%) were the two fastest growing sectors also contributing to a real GDP growth of 3.5% in the third quarter.
  • Housing starts in December were up 11.3% from the previous month, and were up 5.7% from December 2015. The total number of starts for the year 2016 was up 4.9% from the previous year.  Building permits were down 0.2% from the previous month, but were up 0.7% from a year ago.  Building permits for the year 2016 was up 0.4% from the previous year.
  • The housing market index of National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and Wells Fargo decreased 2 points to 67 in January 2017, from 69 in the previous month. The Index was 61 in January of 2016.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey of January 19th showed average fixed mortgage rates decreasing. 30-year fixed rate mortgage averaged 4.09% for the week ending January 19th, down from last week when it averaged 4.12%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year fixed rate averaged 3.81%.
  • Mortgage applications increased 0.8% from a week earlier, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending January 13th.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased 15 thousand to 234 thousand in the week ending January 14. The 4-week moving average was 246.750 thousand, a decrease of 10.25 thousand from the previous week’s average.
  • Real average hourly earnings for all employees increased 0.1% from November to December. This result stems from a 0.4% increase in average hourly earnings combined with a 0.3% increase in the consumer price index for all urban consumers.
  • The consumer price index (headline index) rose 0.3% in December, while the core index increased 0.2%. The consumer price index increased 2.1% for the 12-month period ending in December, while the core index rose 2.2%.
  • The FED’s “Beige Book” indicated that overall economic activity continued to expand at a modest pace across most regions from late November through the end of the year.
  • The January 2017 Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicated that business activity continued to grow modestly in New York State.
  • The Philadelphia FED’s manufacturing business outlook survey for January 2017 reported that economic conditions continued to improve.
  • The Chicago FED’s National Financial Conditions Index remained at negative 0.78 in the week ending January 13.

 

  • Advance estimates of retail and food services sales for December were up 0.6% from November, and were up 4.1% from December 2015.  Total sales for the year 2016 were up 3.3% from the year 2015.
  • Total manufacturing and trade sales for November were up 0.1% from October, and were up 2.3% from November 2015. Inventories were up 0.7% from the previous month, and were up 1.5% from a year ago.
  • Sales of merchant wholesalers in November were up 0.4% from the previous month, and were up 3.4% from the November 2015 level. Total inventories were up 1.0% from October, and were up 1.4% from November 2015.
  • The federal government budget ran a deficit of $27.5 billion in December, after a deficit of $136.7 billion in the previous month. The cumulative deficit for the first three months of the fiscal year 2017 was $208.4 billion, compared with the deficit of $215.6 billion for the first three months of the previous fiscal year.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance increased by 10 thousand to 247 thousand in the week ending January 7. The 4-week moving average was 256.5 thousand, a decrease of 1.75 thousand from the previous week’s revised average.
  • The number of job openings was little changed at 5.5 million on the last business day of November, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Over the month, hires and separations were also little changed at 5.2 million and 5.0 million, respectively.
  • The labor Market Conditions Index constructed by the Federal Reserve was negative 0.3 in December. This was the first negative figure since May of 2016.  The index was 2.1 in November of 2016, and 2.4 in December of 2015.
  • The producer price index for final demand (headline index) increased 0.3% in December, following a 0.4% increase in the previous month, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The core index, final demand less foods and energy, increased 0.2% in December, after a 0.4% increase in the previous month. Both the headline index and the core index increased 1.6% from December 2015 to December 2016.
  • The import price index in December was up 0.4% from November, and was up 1.5% from December of 2016. The export price index was up 0.3% from November, and was up 1.1% from December of 2015.
  • November consumer credit outstanding increased at an annual rate of 7.9% to $3,750.0 billion. Revolving credit increased at an annual rate of 13.5%, while non-revolving credit increased 5.9%.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed fixed mortgage rates falling for the second time since November. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 4.12% for the week ending January 12, down from last week when it averaged 4.20%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year fixed rate averaged 3.92%.
  • Mortgage applications increased 5.8% from a week earlier week, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending January 6, 2017.
  • The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment, preliminary, was 98.1 in early January, virtually unchanged from the final reading for December (98.2). The index was 92.0 in January of 2016.

 

  • Total non-farm payroll employment increased 156 thousand in December, following an increase of 204 thousand in the previous month.   Private-sector payrolls increased by 144 thousand in the month, while government employment increased by 12 thousand.
  • The number of unemployed persons increased by 120 thousand to 7.529 million. The unemployment rate edged up to 4.7% in December, from 4.6% in November. The unemployment rate was 5.0% in December of 2015.
  • The average workweek of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls held steady at 34.3 hours. Average hourly earnings increased by 10 cents to $26.00, while average weekly earnings decreased by $3.43 to $891.80.  Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings were up 2.9%, and average weekly earnings were up 2.3%.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased 28 thousand to 235 thousand in the week ending December 31. The 4-week moving average was 256.75 thousand, a decrease of 5.75 thousand from the previous week’s revised average.
  • Sales of domestic cars increased 1.3% in December, while total light vehicle (cars and light trucks) sales increased 3.1%. Total vehicle sales were 18.3 million units in December, at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, compared to 17.7 million in the previous month, and 17.4 million in December of 2015.
  • New orders for manufactured goods decreased 2.4% in November, while shipments decreased 0.1%. Year-to-date, new orders were down 1.8% from the same period in 2015, while shipments were down 2.0%.
  • In November, international trade deficit was $45.2 billion, $2.9 billion more than the revised October figure. The cumulative trade deficit for the first eleven months of 2016 was $454.0 billion, compared with a cumulative deficit of $458.9 billion during the first eleven months of 2015.
  • Construction spending in November was up 0.9% from the previous month, and was up 4.1% from November 2015. Private construction increased 1.0%, while public construction increased 0.8%.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey of January 5th showed that 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell this week for the first time since November. 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.20% for the week ending January 5, 2017, down from last week when it averaged 4.32%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year fixed rate averaged 3.97%.
  • Mortgage applications decreased 12.0% from two weeks earlier, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending December 30.
  • The Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) manufacturing survey indicated that the manufacturing sector expanded in December, and the overall economy grew for the 91st consecutive month.
  • In December, the Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) non-manufacturing survey results indicated growth in the non-manufacturing business activity (exceeded 50.0%) for the 83rd consecutive month. Twelve non-manufacturing industries reported growth, and three industries reported contraction.
  • The Federal Reserve Bank Chicago’s National Financial Conditions Index (NFCI) held steady at negative 0.76 in the week ending December 30. The credit sub-index ticked up from the previous week, while the risk, leverage and nonfinancial leverage sub-indexes were all unchanged.