Business Trends

March 31st, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- Due to the government shutdown, the latest news on personal income released by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis combined January and February data, but also was incomplete. Here are the few key points from the report: ● Personal income actually declined in January by 0.1 percent. That was the first […]

March 30th, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest report on consumer sentiment showed a big jump up for the entire month of March. The University of Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment increased from 93.8 in February to 98.4 in March. The March level was “slightly above the average of 97.2 recorded in the past 26 months.” Rising […]

March 27th, 2019 by

Growth in housing is always good news for small businesses, as 97.4 percent of employer firms in residential construction have fewer than 20 employees. by Raymond J. Keating- Residential housing continues to be a drag on the economy, as confirmed, once again, in the latest housing permits and starts data from the U.S. Census Bureau. […]

March 21st, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The Federal Reserve issued its latest statement on monetary policy on March 20, along with its economic projections. In its statement, the Fed summed up it take on the economy this way: “Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in January indicates that the labor market remains strong but […]

March 17th, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- According to the latest report from the Federal Reserve, industrial production – that is, the real output of the manufacturing, mining, and electric and gas utilities – performed poorly during the first two months of 2019. Overall industrial production inched forward by 0.1 percent in February, which followed on a decline […]

March 14th, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The Census Bureau’s durable goods report for January was positive, beating market expectations. While economists and other watchers expected a decline in durable goods orders for January, orders actually increased by 0.4 percent, which was the third consecutive monthly increase. Drilling down, transportation orders, which can be very volatile from month […]

March 7th, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest take on economic activity via the Fed’s Beige Book pointed to continued, but slowing growth in late January and February. As noted in this latest survey of contacts outside the Federal Reserve system, “Economic activity continued to expand in late January and February, with ten Districts reporting slight-to-moderate growth, […]

March 5th, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The two latest takes on the economy from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) provide a double hit of generally good news on the economy. First, on March 1, the ISM’s manufacturing index reported that the manufacturing sector grew in February for the 30th straight month, while also pointing out that […]

March 1st, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released its estimate on estimate on economic growth for the fourth quarter 2018 and for the entire year. According to the data, economic growth improved in 2018, but the U.S. economy is not growing as robustly as it has averaged in the past. During […]

February 27th, 2019 by

by Raymond J. Keating- On February 26, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis published its latest report of economic growth in the states. The data looked at the third quarter of 2018, and found that economic growth was positive in 49 states, with West Virginia’s state GDP experiencing no growth. It’s also worth noting that […]

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