August 17, 2015

Latest Economic News From The U.S. & Canada

  • Industrial production in the United States rose 0.6 percent in July as manufacturing output increased 0.8 percent, mining activity rose 0.2 percent and utilities output fell 0.1 percent. Year-over-year, industrial production was 1.3 percent higher.
  • In a reading that was far below expectations, Statistics Canada announced last week that factory sales in the country increased just 1.2 percent between May 2015 and June 2015. (Analysts had predicted a 2.7 percent rise.) Sales of fabricated metal products dropped 8.2 percent for the month while overall factory sales were down 3.1 percent from the previous June.
  • The U.S. Department of Labor announced last week that the number of Americans who filed for federal unemployment insurance rose to 274,000 for the week that ended Aug. 8 from 269,000 the week before. The four-week moving average of first-time claims fell, however, but the number of individuals who continued to receive benefits also increased. That figure rose to 2.273 million for the week that ended Aug. 1 from 2.258 million the week before. The Labor Department also announced last week that there were 5.2 million jobs available in the United States in June.
  • In other economic news: U.S. labor productivity increased at a 1.3 percent annualized rate in the second quarter of 2015; the U.S. Producer Price Index increased 0.2 percent from June 2015 to July 2015, but fell 0.8 percent between July 2014 and July 2015; and the National Federation of Independent Business’s Small Business Optimism Index increased 1.3 points as more small business owners said they planned to hire and make capital outlays.