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Economic Statistics for 6 Mar 14

Those chain stores that still report monthly sales generally reported improved year-on-year sales results in February.

The Challenger Job-Cut Report fell to 41,835 layoffs in February from 45,107 in January and 55,356 a year ago.

Gallup’s U.S. Payroll to Population employment rate was 43.1% in February up from 42.0% in January.

Initial jobless claims fell 26,000 to 323,000. The 4-week average fell 1,750 to 336,500, while continuing claims fell 8,000 to 2.907 million.

Productivity in the 4th quarter of 2013 rose a revised1.8%, more than half a percent below expectations.Unit labor costs fell an annualized -0.1%.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index rose 0.1 points to -28.5 in the latest week, a seven-month high.

Factory orders declined by -0.7% in February, following a January drop that was revised downwards to -2.0%.

The Fed’s balance sheet rose $11.8 billion last week, with total assets of $4.172 trillion. Reserve Bank credit increased $6.2 billion.

The Fed reports that M2 money supply fell by $-8.1 billion in the latest week.

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