If you’ve been to your local Macy’s (M) or Kohl’s (KSS) recently you might be feeling a bit like Rip Van Winkle. The wreaths are hung, Christmas trees line aisles and the tables full of flannel pajamas, ornaments and berry-scented candles are ready to get picked over. Target (TGT) has already started airing a holiday-themed TV commercial. Rest assured, you did not sleep through Halloween. Hanukkah and Christmas are not just around the corner, in fact, Thanksgiving and the infamous Black Friday is still more than a month away! It might seem as if retailers have conspired to lead us [...]
Business inventories climbed 0.6% in August to a seasonally adjusted $ 1.6 trillion, the Commerce Department said Monday. The gain in inventories was led by motor vehicles and parts, which jumped 1.5% on the month and 20.3% compared to Aug. 2011 levels, and by clothing, which rose 3% monthly and is up 6.2% compared to Aug. 2011 levels. The broader inventory-to-sales ratio stayed at 1.28. July inventories were upwardly revised to 1.1% from 0.8%.
BRUSSELS Output at euro zone factories grew much more than expected in August, helped by summer demand for food and French car production, but industry’s apparent resilience is unlikely to be enough to avoid a recession in the indebted region this year. Industrial production in the 17 countries sharing the euro rose 0.6 percent in August from July, the EU’s statistics office Eurostat said on Friday, beating expectations of a 0.4 percent fall forecast by economists in a Reuters poll. That was lifted by a strong showing in France and Italy, which along with Germany make up around two thirds [...]
The U.S. trade deficit widened in August, in line with analyst expectations, as U.S. goods exports fell for the fifth consecutive month, a government report showed on Thursday. The monthly trade gap increased to $ 44.2 billion, from an upwardly revised estimate of $ 42.5 billion in July, the Commerce Department said. Analysts were expecting an August trade gap of about $ 44.0 billion. Overall U.S. exports dropped 1.0 percent as troubles in Europe continue to weigh on global growth, while imports fell 0.1 percent in a sign of faltering U.S. demand for consumer products, autos and capital goods. Exports [...]
The U.S. trade deficit widened by 4.1% in August to $ 44.2 billion, the Commerce Department said Thursday. The trade deficit was close to the consensus forecast of Wall Street economists of a deficit of $ 44.0 billion. Both imports and exports declined in August, but exports fell at a faster pace. This is the third straight monthly decline in exports. The U.S. trade deficit with China narrowed slightly to $ 28.7 billion in August compared with $ 29.0 billion in the same month last year.
The number of U.S. job openings fell slightly in August, a troubling sign for a labor market that is recovering at a painfully slow pace. Job openings – a measure of labor demand – dropped to 3.56 million from 3.59 million in July, the Labor Department said on Wednesday in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. The data casts a small shadow over recent signs of improvement in the labor market. Government data last week showed the U.S. unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to 7.8 percent in September, its lowest level since President Barack Obama took office. That was [...]
BERLIN German industrial output edged down in August due to a weaker construction sector, Economy Ministry data showed on Monday, suggesting that Europe’s largest economy is weathering the euro zone crisis relatively well. Industrial production in Germany slipped by 0.5 percent on the month in August. That compared with the consensus forecast in a Reuters poll of 42 economists for a 0.8 percent drop. Activity in the construction sector fell by 2.8 percent and factories churned out 1.3 percent fewer intermediate goods, dragging overall output down. Energy output, which rose by 1.5 percent, was the main bright spot. “The trend [...]
Consumer spending in the U.S. rose in August by the fasted amount in six months, according to the latest government data. Spending jumped 0.5% last month on a seasonally adjusted basis, the Commerce Department said Friday. Personal income, however, rose a much smaller 0.1% and the U.S. savings rate fell to 3.7% from 4.1%. That’s the biggest one-month decline in a year. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast a 0.5% increase in consumer spending, largely because of sharply higher gas prices in August. They also forecast a 0.2% rise in personal income. Since spending rose faster than income, the savings [...]
Orders for durable goods sank 13.2% in August, the biggest one-month decline in more than three years, as bookings for autos and aircraft fell sharply, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected a decline of 5.3%. Excluding the volatile transportation sector, whose bookings can swing sharply from month to month, orders fell a much smaller 1.6%. And orders for core capital goods, which exclude defense and aircraft, actually rose 1.1% after a 5.2% decline in July. Shipments of durable goods fell 3.0% in August, while inventories rose 0.6%. Orders for July were revised down to a [...]
Sales of new single-family homes in the U.S. fell slightly in August to a 373,000 annual pace from July’s slightly revised level of 374,000, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. The sales pace in July, originally reported as 372,000, was the highest since April 2010. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch expected new home sales last month to total about 380,000 on an annualized basis. The median sales prices, meanwhile, soared 11.2% in August to $ 256,900, the single biggest monthly increase ever recorded. The supply of new homes on market remained steady at 4.5 months. Sales rose in all regions except the [...]