U.S. Economic News

June 28, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

The U.S. Census Bureau Advance Economic Indicators Report shows that the goods deficit decreased 1.8% in May to $65.9 billion.  Meanwhile, wholesale inventories increased 0.3% and retail inventories rose 0.6%.  Census Bureau Report
 
The National Association of Realtors pending home sales index fell 0.8% to 108.5 in May (down 1.7% Y/Y), marking a three month slump for the index.  
NAR says that critically low supply levels have dragged down the housing market and that we may be approaching a topping off in sales.  NAR Report

U.S. News

Reuters reports Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Neel Kashkari says that the Fed should not be raising interest rates on account of cooling inflation and weak wage growth. Kashkari was the lone dissenting vote against the June interest rate hike, stating that there likely is still slack in labor markets. Reuters
 
The Wall Street Journal reports that about two-thirds of contractors and builders who are having difficulty finding labor are struggling to finish projects on time.  Industry officials warn that if the administration goes ahead with its proposed $1 trillion infrastructure program the labor shortage will get even worse, leading contractors to turn down even more projects than they do today. WSJ
 
Janet Yellen stated on Tuesday that globalization and technological change have been harmful to a large share of the population.
Yellen also said that it is challenging to help those who have lost jobs and suffered on account of offshoring and technological change, as problems like increased death rates and rising drug use have worsened in recent years. WSJ

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