Free Markets, Free People

Economic Statistics for 4 Feb 16

Chain stores that are reporting sales results today say January was a weak month, and some are issuing cuts in quarterly forecasts.

Non-farm Productivity sank to an annualized -3.0% decline in the 4th Quarter of 2015, as unit labor costs rose 4.5%.

Factory orders sank a very sharp 2.9% in December following November’s downwardly revised 0.7%. Core capital goods orders fell -4.3%.

The Challenger Job-Cut Report’s layoff count jumped to 75,114 in January, mainly due to Wal-Mart’s announcement of 154 store closures.

The Gallup Good Jobs rate slipped from 45.3% to 44.7% in January.

Initial weekly jobless claims rose 8,000 to 285,000 The 4-week average rose 2,000 to 284,750. Continuing claims fell 18,000 to 2.255 million.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index fell -0.4 points to 44.2 in the latest week.

The Fed’s balance sheet rose $1.2 billion last week, with total assets of $4.484 trillion. Reserve bank credit fell $-6.4 billion.

The Fed reports that M2 money supply rose by $57.9 billion in the latest week.

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