Data Updates

Data Updates

July 2013

  • 07.31.2013
  • Employment Cost Index
  • Employer costs of compensation for civilian workers rose 0.5 percent (nonannualized) in the second quarter, following an upwardly revised 0.5 percent increase in the first quarter. The wages and salary component increased 0.4 percent, slightly below the first quarter’s 0.5 percent advance. The benefits component edged down from 0.6 percent to 0.4 percent in the current quarter. Year-over-year, civilian compensation advanced 1.9 percent in the second quarter, on par with its average (1.9 percent) since the recession ended. Civilian wages and salaries increased 1.6 percent over the past 12 months, also on par with its average (1.6 percent) since the recession ended. Growth in civilian benefits continues to slow from 3.7 percent in 2011 to 2.1 percent in the first quarter. Year-over-year, growth in private compensation, wages, and benefits grew 1.9 percent. Inflationary impetus from the labor market continues to be minimal as compensation growth has averaged 1.9 percent for the since the recession ended.
  • 07.31.2013
  • GDP
  • According to the advance estimate, real GDP increased at an annualized rate of 1.7 percent in the second quarter, following a 1.1 percent increase in the first quarter. Over the last four quarters, real GDP is up 1.4 percent. Contributions to the second quarter increase in GDP came from consumption, residential and business fixed investment, inventories, and exports.

    Personal consumption expenditures increased 1.8 percent during the quarter, contributing 1.2 percentage points to GDP growth, and over the past four quarters, consumption has increased of 1.9 percent. After a decline in the first quarter due primarily to a drop in investment in structures, business fixed investment increased 4.6 percent in the second quarter. Residential investment, which has averaged quarterly increases of 14.4 percent since mid-2011, increased 13.4 percent. Residential and business fixed investment contributed 0.4 and 0.6 percentage point to overall GDP growth, respectively, while the change in private inventories contributed an additional 0.4 percentage points.

    Exports increased 5.4 percent during the quarter, while imports increased 9.5 percent. The net contribution of international trade to GDP growth was −0.8 percentage points. The pullback in government spending seemed to slow somewhat in the second quarter. Government spending decreased just 0.4 percent, following declines of 6.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012 and a 4.2 percent in the first quarter of this year.

  • 07.30.2013
  • Home Price Indexes
  • From April to May the S&P Case-Shiller 10- and 20-city housing price composite indexes rose a seasonally-adjusted 1.1 and 1.0 percent, respectively. On a nonseasonally-adjusted basis, Dallas and Denver reached record-level highs, surpassing pre-financial crisis peaks. Additionally, five cities posted monthly gains of over 3.0 percent. Elsewhere, only two cities experienced monthly price declines after seasonal adjustment: Cleveland, down 0.5 percent and Minneapolis, down 0.2 percent. On an annual basis, both indexes posted the strongest year-over-year gains since March 2006, as the 10-city composite rose a seasonally-adjusted 11.8 percent and the 20-city composite rose 12.2 percent. Overall home prices are back to spring 2004 levels.

    The FHFA housing price index rose by 0.7 percent in May after a slight downward revision to April’s estimate. This represents the sixteenth consecutive month of home price increases and a 7.3 percent increase over the past 12 months. Regionally, monthly price changes where modest across all regions, while annual growth rates ranged from a 3.3 percent increase in the Middle Atlantic to a 15.8 percent increase in the Pacific. Overall home prices are back to early 2005 levels.

  • 07.26.2013
  • Consumer Sentiment
  • Final numbers show that the University of Michigan’s Index of Consumer Sentiment has risen to 85.1 from the preliminary number (83.9) posted earlier in July. The Index of Consumer Expectations contributed to the intramonth gain with a revision of 76.5, up from 73.8. July’s final reading was revised up from the preliminary report and this revision brings the index to its highest level in six years.

    As for inflation expectation revisions, consumers now expect a year-ahead inflation rate of 3.1 percent (down from 3.3 percent) and a longer-term (five- to ten-year) rate of 2.8 percent (down from 2.9 percent).

  • 07.25.2013
  • Durable Goods
  • New orders for durable goods rose 4.2 percent in June. Over the past year, new orders are up 10.9 percent. New orders for transportation equipment increased 12.8 percent following an increase of 14.9 percent in May. New orders excluding transportation equipment were essentially unchanged in June, following increases of 1.0 and 1.8 percent in May and April, respectively. Orders for nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft, which is used to evaluate the near-term outlook in equipment and software investment, increased 0.7 percent in June. Shipments of durable goods, which are up 3.4 percent over the past year, were flat in June. Perhaps more disconcerting is that shipments of nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft (which map directly into GDP) declined 0.9 percent in June. This decrease followed an increase of 1.9 percent in May. On a year-over-year basis, shipments of nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft are up 0.8 percent.
  • 07.24.2013
  • New Home Sales
  • In June new home sales rose 8.3 percent and are up 38.1 percent annually to a seasonally-adjusted annualized rate of 497,000 units sold. This represents the highest level of new home sales since May 2008. Regionally, monthly sales rates ranged from an 11.8 percent decline in the Midwest to an 18.5 percent increase in the Northeast. On a year-over-year basis, all areas showed strong positive growth with the greatest increase being a 100.0 percent increase in the Northeast. Meanwhile, the monthly supply of homes fell 7.1 percent for the month and 18.8 percent annually to a 3.9 month supply at the current sales pace. The median sales price of new homes in June was $249,700, which is a 5.0 percent decline for the month, but a 7.4 percent increase since this time last year.
  • 07.22.2013
  • Existing Home Sales
  • Existing single-family home sales fell 1.1 percent for the month, but are up 14.5 percent annually to a seasonally-adjusted annualized rate of 4.5 million units sold. Regionally, all areas showed strong year-over-year growth rates ranging from an increase of 9.2 percent in the West to a 16.5 percent increase in the Midwest. On a monthly basis, all regions were relatively flat, ranging from no change in the Northeast and Midwest to a decline of 1.8 percent in the West. The median sales price rose for the fifth consecutive month to $214,700, the highest level since August 2007. Existing single-family homes inventory rose 2.6 percent to 1.9 million units, the highest level since August 2012. Meanwhile, the monthly supply of homes rose 4.0 percent, but is down 18.8 percent to a 5.2 month supply on an annual basis.
  • 07.17.2013
  • Housing Starts
  • Housing starts of single-family homes fell 0.8 percent from May to June to a seasonally-adjusted annualized rate of 591,000 units. This represents an 11.5 percent increase over the past 12 months and the lowest level of housing starts since September 2012. However, in the first half of this year housing starts have averaged an annualized rate of about 612,000 units each month. Regionally, housing starts ranged from a 4.0 percent increase in the West to a 3.9 percent decline in the South on a monthly basis. On an annual basis, housing starts were flat in the Northeast and increased 15.2 percent in the South. The issuance of building permits rose 0.6 percent from May to June and 24.6 percent since June 2012.
  • 07.16.2013
  • Industrial Production
  • Industrial production rose 0.3 percent (nonannualized) in June, following no change in May. The near-term trend (three-month annualized percent change) has slowed to 0.0 percent (from 5.9 in January). On a year-over-year basis, overall production is up 2.0 percent. Manufacturing production also rose, increasing 0.2 percent for the month while the year-over-year growth rate rests at 1.8 percent. Breaking down the manufacturing sector, durable goods production increased 0.5 percent while nondurable goods fell 0.1 percent in June. Within durable goods manufacturing, machinery, motor vehicle and parts, and miscellaneous manufacturing all increased more than 1.0 percent. Elsewhere within durable goods production, wood products, primary metals, aerospace and miscellaneous transportation equipment along with furniture and related products posted declines. Overall capacity utilization bumped up 0.1 percentage points to 77.8 percent of capacity, which is roughly where is has been since January 2012; current readings are now 2.4 percentage points below its long run average.
  • 07.15.2013
  • Retail Sales
  • Total retail sales increased at a nonannualized rate of 0.4 percent in June, a slight deceleration from 0.6 percent gain in May. On a yearly basis, retail sales are up 5.7 percent. Auto sales increase 1.8 percent in June. Excluding autos, retail sales were flat in June. Over the past 12 months retail sales excluding autos have increased 4.5 percent. Contributing to the monthly gain in total sales were improvements for furniture and home furnishings (up 2.4 percent), non-store retailers (up 2.1percent) and motor vehicles and parts (up 1.8 percent). Sectors that saw the largest declines in June were building materials (down 2.2 percent), food service and drinking places (down 1.2 percent), and electronics and appliances (down 0.1 percent). A less volatile indicator of sales growth, “core” retail sales (which excludes sales of autos, building supplies, and gas stations) decreased −0.1 percent in June following an increase of 0.4 percent in May. On a year-over-year basis “core” retail sales are up 4.5 percent.
  • 07.12.2013
  • PPI
  • The Producer Price Index (PPI) rose at an annualized rate of 9.6 percent in June, advancing for the second straight month. On a year-over-year basis, the PPI is up 2.5 percent. Producer prices for finished consumer foods rose 2.4 percent in June, down slightly from May’s 8.0 percent increase. Energy prices saw a sharp increase of 40.8 percent in June. Year-over-year energy prices are only up a slight 4.2 percent. Excluding volatile food and energy prices, “core” PPI rose 2.0 percent in June up from the 0.7 percent increase in May. At earlier stages of production, core intermediate good prices increased 0.6 percent and core crude prices 1.0 percent in June.
  • 07.12.2013
  • Consumer Sentiment
  • Preliminary numbers show that The University of Michigan’s Index of Consumer Sentiment dipped to 83.9 in early July from 84.1 in June. This is the second consecutive month of declines. Survey respondents viewed current economic conditions better than last month: That sub-index rose from 93.8 to 99.7, the highest reading since July 2007. The proximate cause for the index of consumer expectations decline among high income households, as well as the falloff in the future economic prospects was a surge in the number of households that expect higher interest rates during the year ahead. Consumers are anticipating interest rate increase to slow the pace of economic growth and dim prospects for employment. For the first time since 2004, more households are looking towards low interest rates rather than low prices when asked about buying attractive conditions for homes and vehicles. Finally, buying attitudes toward household durables improved this month to 147 from 143 in June.

    As for inflation expectations in early July, consumers expect a year-ahead inflation rate of 3.3 percent and a longer-term (five- to ten-year) rate of 2.9 percent.

  • 07.11.2013
  • Import and Export Prices
  • Import prices fell −0.2 percent in June, marking four months of consecutive declines. Nonpetroleum prices drove the decrease, falling −0.3 percent while petroleum prices increased 0.2 percent after posting declines for two months. Like overall imports, nonpetroleum prices have now decreased for four consecutive months. On a year-over-year basis, import prices increased 0.2 percent, the first yearly increase since April 2012. Petroleum prices increased as well, rising 2.9 percent relative to last year, also the first yearly increase since April 2012. Nonpetroleum prices fell −0.5 on a yearly basis after falling −0.4 percent in May and −0.2 percent in both March and April. Although petroleum prices showed some firming relative to recent reports, weakness in the global economy continues to weigh down nonpetroleum import prices making June?s report similar to those in April, and May.

    Export prices fell −0.1 percent in June, marking four months of consecutive declines as well. On a year-over-year basis, export prices advanced 0.8 percent after falling in both May and April.

  • 07.08.2013
  • Consumer Credit
  • Consumer credit rose at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 8.3 percent to $2,795.7 billion in May, pushing past expectations. Consumer credit increased 5.82 percent from May 2013 over May 2012. Student loans continue to be the major driver behind rising balances. Nonrevolving credit and revolving credit segments rose an annualized 8.2 percent and 9.7 percent, respectively, in May.
  • 07.05.2013
  • The Employment Situation
  • In June, total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 195,000, coming in at the high end of the consensus range, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 7.6 percent. On the household side of the report, both the labor force participation rate and the employment-to-population ratio ticked up 0.1 percent to 63.5 percent and 58.7 percent, respectively.

    As for the establishment side of the report, upward revisions to both April and May have added a total of 70,000 jobs than previously reported. Over the past 12 months employment growth has averaged a total of 182,000 jobs per month, and just over 200,000 jobs per month in the first half of this year. Leisure and hospitality led employment gains in June by adding 75,000 jobs followed by professional and business services, up 53,000, and retail trade, up 37,000. Government continues to lead employment declines, falling 7,000 for the month, and was closely tailed by manufacturing employment which fell by 6,000. The average work week for all employees was unchanged at 34.5 hours; However, in manufacturing the work week increased by 0.1 hour to 40.9 hours. The average hourly earnings for all employees rose by 10 cents in June and has increased by 51 cents over the past year to $24.01.

  • 07.03.2013
  • International Trade
  • In May, the U.S. trade deficit expanded $4.9 billion to a level of −$45.0 billion after expanding $3.0 billion to −$40.1 billion the month prior. May’s expansion comes in above consensus forecasts which had predicted a contraction to −$37.6 billion. Imports increased 1.9 percent while exports fell −0.3 percent leading to the overall expansion. Slower global activity continues to weigh down export activity, which has been slower than import activity on a monthly basis for four out of five months in 2013. On a year-over-year basis, imports grew 0.7 percent after contracting &mius;1.4 percent and −5.1 percent in April and March. Exports posted yearly gains of 1.5 percent after rising 1.8 percent in April and falling −0.7 percent in March.
  • 07.02.2013
  • Factory Orders
  • New orders for manufactured goods increased 2.1 percent (nonannualized) in May, following an increase of 1.3 percent in April. Year-over-year growth rates for new orders are up 3.7 percent. Excluding transportation, new orders rose 0.6 percent for the month while new orders of durable goods and nondurable goods rose 3.7 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively. Nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft orders, considered a leading indicator of business investment spending, increased 1.5 percent. Shipments increased 1.0 percent in May while unfilled orders and inventories of manufactured goods also rose 0.8 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively. The unfilled orders-to-shipments ratio now rests at 6.21, roughly where it has been since late 2009, but still well above the pre-crisis average of 4.3. The inventory-to-shipments ratio edged down to 1.30, again roughly where it has been since late 2009.
  • 07.01.2013
  • Construction Spending
  • Private construction spending rose to $605.4 billion in May, nearly the same as the upwardly revised April estimate of $605.7 billion. May’s results are 10.6 percent higher year-over-year. Residential construction spending rose 1.3 percent over the month, to $322.3 billion. New multifamily construction spending rose 2.5 percent in May and is up 51.7 percent year-over-year. New single-family construction posted a monthly gain of 0.4 percent and is up 33.2 percent since last May. Private nonresidential construction spending was at $283.1 billion, 1.4 percent below the downwardly revised April estimate of $287.1 billion. The manufacturing and communications sectors registered the largest month-to-month declines of 8.1 and 6.3 percent, respectively. The religious and amusement and recreation sectors saw the largest monthly increases of 7.1 and 2.2 percent, respectively.
  • 07.01.2013
  • ISM Manufacturing
  • The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) increased 1.9 percentage points to 50.9 in the month of June, which indicates a general expansion in the manufacturing sector as the index is above the growth threshold of 50. The Index has slipped below 50 only twice since July 2009. All five components that constitute the PMI have increased since May. Furthermore, four out of the five components were above the growth threshold of 50 with employment being the exception at 48.7 percentage points, which is a decrease of 2.4 from the previous month. Production saw the largest increase of 4.8 percentage points to 53.4, a reversal of the 4.9 percent drop that occurred from April to May. New orders increased 3.1 percentage points to 51.9 percent, supplier deliveries increased 1.3 percentage points to 50.0 percent, and employment decreased 1.4 percentage points to 48.7 from May to June. Inventories increased 1.5 percentage points to 50.5 percent. The ISM Prices Index increased by 3.0 percentage points to 52.5 percent. Prices have decreased by 9 percentage points since February 2013’s high of 61.5 percent.