Free Markets, Free People
Economic Statistics for 18 Jan 12
Today’s economic statistical releases:
Industrial production rose by 0.4% last month, with manufacturing increasing 0.9%. Capacity utilization rose to 78.1%.
The overall Producer Price Index fell -0.1% last month, but is up 4.8% on a year-over-year basis. The Core PPI, minus food and energy—rose 0.3%, and is up 3% for the year.
The Housing Market Index rose from a depressed 21 to a slightly less depressed 25 last month.
The Mortgage Bankers Association is reporting a huge jump in mortgage applications, with purchase apps up 10.3% and re-finance apps up 26.4%, bringing the composite up 23.1% for the week.
In weekly retail sales, Redbook reports a second slow weeks of retail sales, with a year-over-year sales increase of only 2.8%. ICSC-Goldman Store Sales are also soft, with chain store sales up only 0.1% for the week, and 3% over last year.
Overall, we’re continuing to see mildly good news overall, in terms of production and housing, but retail spending and employment remains relatively weak, and inflation threats still hover over what remains a somewhat recessionary economy.