The U.S. trade deficit widened in October as exports suffered the biggest drop in nearly four years, indicating slowing global demand is likely to weigh on U.S. economic growth in the fourth quarter. The Commerce Department said on Tuesday the trade gap increased 4.9 percent to $ 42.2 billion even as imports declined to the lowest level in 1-1/2 years. September’s trade gap was revised to $ 40.3 billion from the previously reported $ 41.6 billion. Economists polled by Reuters had expected the trade deficit to rise to $ 42.6 billion in October. The wider trade gap in October reflected [...]
U.S. consumers increased their debt in October by a seasonally adjusted $ 14.2 billion, the third straight strong gain, the Federal Reserve reported Friday. The increase in October was above the $ 12 billion gain expected by Wall Street economists. An upward revision to September – to a $ 12.2 billion increase from an initial estimate of $ 11.4 billion – added to the sense of stronger credit growth. As in the prior two months, the surge in October credit was fueled by a jump in non-revolving debt such as student loans, personal loans and auto loans. These loans experienced [...]
U.S. consumer credit rose more than expected in October, increasing for a third month in a hopeful sign for consumer spending. The Federal Reserve said on Friday consumer credit increased $ 14.2 billion in October after rising by an upwardly revised $ 12.2 billion in September. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast consumer credit rising $ 10 billion after advancing by a previously reported $ 11.4 billion in September. Revolving credit, which includes credit cards, rebounded to an increase of $ 3.38 billion after falling $ 2.19 billion the prior month. Non-revolving credit, which includes auto loans as well as student loans made by the government, rose $ 10.78 billion.
NEW YORK The number of homes seized by lenders tumbled in October, while fewer properties were in the foreclosure process in another sign of improvement for the sector, data analysis firm CoreLogic said on Monday. There were 58,000 completed foreclosures in October, down from 77,000 in September and 70,000 seen a year ago, according to a report from CoreLogic . September’s figure was upwardly revised from 57,000. In the years before the housing market’s collapse, between 2000 and 2006 an average 21,000 foreclosures were completed a month, the report said. There have been about 3.9 million foreclosures since the epicenter [...]
Consumer spending in the U.S. fell in October for the first time in five months while incomes were essentially flat, the Commerce Department said Friday. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast a 0.1% rise in spending, seasonally adjusted, and a 0.2% increase in personal income. Since spending fell compared to income growth, the personal savings rate edged up to 3.4% from 3.3%, but it remained near a five-year low. Also, inflation as gauged by the core PCE price index, which excludes food and energy, increased a scant 0.1% last month. The core index is up 1.6% over the past 12 [...]
Orders for big-ticket U.S. goods were essentially flat in October, as declines in defense and transportation offset increases in metals, machinery and electrical equipment, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had expected orders for durable goods to drop 0.4%. Orders for core capital goods excluding defense and transportation, a key barometer of broad U.S. business spending, jumped 1.7% last month, the biggest increase since May. Bookings for transportation equipment, a particularly volatile category, declined 3.1% last month. Omitting the transportation sector, orders rose 1.5%. Orders minus defense, another volatile category, edged up a smaller 0.1%. Defense capital-goods [...]
A gauge of planned U.S. business spending increased by the most in five months in October, but a fourth straight month of declines in shipments underscored the damage that fears of tighter fiscal policy next year are inflicting on the economy. The Commerce Department said on Tuesday non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, rebounded 1.7 percent last month after falling 0.4 percent the prior month. Economists had expected so-called core capital goods orders to fall 0.5 percent. Shipments of non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, used to calculate equipment and software spending [...]
It’s likely that the U.S. economy will continue to “modestly” expand through early 2013, the Conference Board said Wednesday as it reported that its leading economic index rose 0.2% in October after increasing a downwardly revised 0.5% in September. A prior estimate for September pegged the increase at 0.6%. However, Hurricane Sandy and the outcome from fiscal cliff negotiations could impact growth, the Conference Board noted. October’s result beat analysts’ expectations of a 0.1% gain. The LEI is a weighted gauge of 10 indicators that are designed to signal business cycle peaks and troughs. Four of the 10 indicators made [...]
Data on housing starts for October are due at 8:30 a.m. from the U.S. Department of Commerce. Due in part to disruptions from Hurricane Sandy, economists polled by MarketWatch expect that construction on new homes declined in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 825,000 from a rate of 872,000 in September. Despite the expected decline, the trend is improving along with the overall housing market, and starts are up 25% this year. However, the rate remains far below a bubble peak of almost 2.3 million in 2006.
Sales of existing homes rose 2.1% in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.79 million from a downwardly revised rate of 4.69 million in September, the National Association of Realtors reported Monday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected a rate of 4.8 million for October. Sales are up 10.9% from the prior year. The median existing-home price rose 11.1% from the prior year to $ 178,600. Inventories declined 1.4% to 2.14 million units in October, representing at the current sales rate a 5.4-month supply, the lowest since 2006. Regionally, only the Northeast saw lower sales in October, with [...]