Business Trends

November 23rd, 2020 by

Selling to consumers hunkering down at home this holiday season By Rieva Lesonsky- As the coronavirus ramps up across the country (and globally), it looks like the winter holidays will be particularly challenging for small businesses. But in her blog on the Mintel site, Marcia Mogelonsky, Ph. D., Mintel’s director of Insight, Food & Drink, says […]

November 18th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- Housing continues as a bright spot for the economy and small business, according to the latest report from the U.S. Census Bureau. Housing starts (at a seasonally-adjusted annualized rate) were up by 4.9 percent in October 2020 over September. Starts also were by 14.2 percent compared to a year earlier. Single-family […]

November 17th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- As the economy was heading into the Christmas holiday shopping season, the recovery in retail sales largely hit the brakes in October. The U.S. Census Bureau has reported that retail and food services sales in October were effectively unchanged compared to September, rising by only 0.25 percent. Source: Federal Reserve Bank […]

November 12th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating – High inflation is a nefarious economic ill. It reduces the value of the currency; diminishes consumers’ buying power; slashes away at the value of savings and investments; hikes taxes in an assortment of ways, such as by increasing the real capital gains tax; and jacks up uncertainty, which translates into […]

November 10th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest “Job Openings” report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for September 2020 reinforced the idea that the economy is working to slowly recover from the brunt of the pandemic and government shutdowns. There’s much to still be concerned about, but at least one indicator seemed to signal some […]

November 6th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest employment report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics pointed to October being a strong month in the journey of trying to restore millions of lost American jobs due to the pandemic and related government shutdowns. Whenever we look at this monthly BLS report, it has to be understood […]

November 5th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- Labor productivity – that is, output per hour – is important because ultimately labor compensation is tied to labor productivity. For good measure, the more productive that workers are, the more profitable, generally, businesses will be. So, increases in labor productivity are win-wins that make clear that workers and business owners […]

November 2nd, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- Two measures of manufacturing activity served up some good news for October. First, the Institute for Supply Management reported that the manufacturing sector grew in October, indicating that the economy had expanded for the sixth straight month. Also, with the October ISM Manufacturing PMI coming in at 59.3 percent, it matched […]

October 30th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest personal income report from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis offers glimmers of hope that the economy is moving in the right direction. Specifically, personal income rose by 0.9 percent in September, along with a 0.7 percent increase in real disposable personal income. Regarding personal income, the BEA reported, […]

October 29th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- How can an incredible annualized real GDP growth rate of 33.1 percent, according to the latest report from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, be expected? When it comes after declines of 31.4 percent in the second quarter and 5.0 percent in the first quarter. It must be understood that even […]

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