Consumer Confidence Rebounds in August
The Consumer Confidence Index jumped strongly in August, rebounding from a sharp decline in July, according to the Conference Board. Now at its second-highest level since August 2007, consumer sentiment hit 101.5 in August, rising up from a surprising fall to 91.0 in July and surpassing 99.8 reported in June. The improvement in this report stemmed largely from the public’s better assessment of the labor market and hopefully these strong gains in consumer confidence will translate into increased spending down the line. To learn more, visit here.
Durable Goods Orders Up Again in July
New durable goods orders rose for the second straight month, according to the Census Bureau. Up 2.0 percent in July, this rise in orders extends the 4.1 percent jump seen in June with the majority of the increase due to a boost in the transportation sector (nondefense aircraft orders and rebounding auto sales). Outside of the aircraft and motor vehicles markets, durable goods sales have struggled, with areas such as primary metals and fabricated metal products showing continuing weakness. To learn more, visit here.
Q2 Real GDP Estimate Revised Significantly Higher
Real GDP increased 3.7 percent in the second quarter of this year, significantly higher than the 2.3 percent original estimate released last month, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. The improvement in economic growth was attributed to upward revisions in many categories, but specifically for inventory spending. Despite the improved revised figure, the underlying trends were largely the same, including rebounds in consumer and business spending. This revised figure only muddies speculation about when the Federal Reserve might start to raise short-term rates. Will it be September or December? To learn more, visit here.
Personal Income and Spending Increases Modestly in July
For the fourth straight month, personal income increased 0.4 percent, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Additionally, total manufacturing wages and salaries rose to $793.2 billion in July, up from $788.5 billion in June. Meanwhile, personal spending rose by 0.3 percent for the second consecutive month. In general, it seems American are increasing their spending modestly and at a slower pace that seen in late 2014. To learn more, visit here.