U.S. Steel, Aluminum Imports Down In June
- According to American Metal Market, (AMM, subscription required), imports on unwrought aluminum into the United States fell in June and are now at a two-year low. Imports from all countries except Canada declined 42.7 percent between May and June and were down 11.7 percent for the first six months of the year from the same period in 2017.
- Forbes reported that steel imports into the United States fell for the first time in a year, falling nearly 10.2 percent between June 2017 and June 2018.
- According to the U.S. Labor Department, 213,000 individuals filed for federal unemployment benefits for the week that ended Aug. 4, down from 219,000 the week before. The four-week moving average of first-time claims also fell, but the number of individuals who continued to file for benefits increased. That figure rose to 1.755 million for the week that ended July 28 from 1.726 million the week before. The four-week moving average of continuing claims also rose. In other employment-related news, there were 7 million jobs open in the United States at the end of June 2018. That figure was near its record high of 6.8 million.
- In other economic news: the S. Producer Price Index was unchanged between June 2018 and July 2018 and increased 3.3 percent between July 2017 and July 2018; the U.S. Consumer Price Index increased 0.2 percent in July and was up 2.9 percent year-over-year; and real average hourly earnings in the United States were unchanged from June to July, but were down 0.2 percent from July 2017 to July 2018.