Free Markets, Free People

Economic Statistics for 25 Oct 12

The following US economic statistics were announced today:

Last month’s huge 13.1% drop in durable goods orders rebounded with a 9.9% increase for September, and a 2.0% rise ex-transportation. On a year-over-year basis, orders are up 2.5%, but ex-transportation orders are down –1.6%.

Initial jobless claims for last week were down a sharp 23,000 to 369,000, while the 4-week average rose slightly to 368,000. Continuing claims  fell 2,000 to 3.254 million. Obviously, the weekly claims have been very volatile, and the seasonal adjustment factors haven’t been smoothing that out very well.

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index rose to 0 from –0.87 last month, indicating an economy that is neither expanding nor contracting, but balanced in a perfect equilibrium. Which is, of course, a practical impossibility.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index rose to -34.6 from -34.8 the prior week.

The pending home sales index rose a minimal 0.3% in September, following last month’s big –2.6% drop.

Dale Franks
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