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October 26, 2015

Latest Economic News From The U.S. & Canada

  • The Conference Board’s index of leading indicators for the U.S. economy fell 0.2 percent in September. Despite the slight decline, Conference Board Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research Ataman Ozyildirim said, “[T]he U.S. LEI still suggests economic expansion will continue” and explained “the recent weakness in stock markets, the manufacturing sector and housing permits was offset by gains in financial indicators, and to a lesser extent improvements in consumer expectations and initial claims for unemployment insurance.” Ozyildirim predicted the U.S. economy would expand 2.5 percent in coming quarters.
  • The Kansas City Federal Reserve announced last week that its manufacturing index increased to -1 in October from -8 in September as the production, shipments, employment, and order backlog indexes all improved.
  • According to the U.S. Labor Department, the number of individuals who filed for federal unemployment benefits rose to 259,000 for the week that ended Oct. 17 from 256,000 the previous week. The four-week moving average of first-time claims fell, however, declining to their lowest rates since December 1973. The U.S. Labor Department also announced last week that 27 U.S. states lost jobs in September while 20 states added jobs and three states saw no change in employment.
  • In other economic news: the number of new homes under construction in the United States increased 6.5 percent between August 2015 and September 2015 and 17.5 percent between September 2014 and September 2015; sales of existing homes in the United States rose 4.7 percent for the month and 8.8 percent year-over-year; and the Chicago Federal Reserve’s National Activity Index fell to -0.37 in September from -0.39 in August, indicating U.S. economic growth was softer than usual in September.