We will be offline for Thursday and Friday this week due to travel and will be publishing the missed updates the following week, after the Memorial Day holiday.
Today the Richmond Fed Manufacturing Composite Index plunged 19 points to 1from last month's 20. Investing.com had forecast 15. Because of the highly volatile nature of this index, we include a 3-month moving average to facilitate the identification of trends, now at 14.3, indicates expansion.
This morning's release of the April New Home Sales from the Census Bureau came in at 569K, down 8.4% month-over-month from a revised 642K in March. Seasonally adjusted estimates for December and January were also revised. The Investing.com forecast was for 610K. Today's release included monthly revisions back to January 2015.
The Sentier Research median household income data for April, released this morning, came in at $59,361. The nominal median rose $688 month-over-month and is up $2,176 year-over-year. In percentages, the latest month is up 1.2% MoM and up 3.8% YoY. Adjusted for inflation, the latest month is up $590 MoM and $920 YoY. The real numbers equate to changes of 1.0% MoM and 1.6% YoY.
"Index Points to Increased Economic Growth in April." This is the headline for today's release of the Chicago Fed's National Activity Index, and here is the opening paragraph from the report: "Led by improvements in production-related indicators, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) rose to +0.49 in April from +0.07 in March...."
We have announced our Venerated Voices awards for commentaries published in Q1 2017.
The Chicago Fed's National Activity Index, which we reported on this morning, is based on 85 economic indicators drawn from four broad categories of data:
It's time again for our weekly gasoline update based on data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The price of Regular is up three cents and Premium two cents from last week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $3.07 and San Francisco, CA is the most expensive city, averaging $3.25. South Carolina has the cheapest at $2.04. The WTIC end of day spot price closed at 48.85, a 4.7% increase from this time last week.
The S&P opened Friday below Thursday's close and rose until about midday when it leveled off. It closed with a 0.68% daily gain and a 0.38% weekly loss after Wednesday's largest daily loss since September.
Today's release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 144.5, down 0.2 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at 6.25%, up from 6.16% the previous week. The WLI Growth indicator is now at 5.0, down from the previous week and has been declining for 14 consecutive weeks.