U.S. Economic News

September 13, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

The headline Producer Price Index (“PPI”) for final demand rose 0.2% in August and is up 2.4% since August of last year.  The core — which removes the volatile prices of food, energy, and trade services — also increased 0.2% and is up 1.9% on the year.  BLS Report

U.S. News

The Wall Street Journal reports that the median inflation-adjusted U.S. household income rose to a new record of $59,039 in 2016. While government officials cautioned against historical comparisons due to methodological changes, the number reflects the current economic expansion which, at nine years, is the third-longest such expansion in U.S. history. WSJ

Eric Morath of the Wall Street Journal argues that the current record-high number of job openings may overstate the tightness of the labor market. Morath writes that a glut of openings in low-skill jobs as well as lower search costs for employers could be driving the increase in openings, and that we would expect faster wage growth if the labor market were truly tight. WSJ

According to the Financial Times, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are unlikely to cause enough economic damage to alter the Federal Reserve’s rate hike path. While many expect the damage from the storms to detract 0.5 — 0.8% from third quarter GDP growth, the economic effects will likely only be transitory and thus will not warrant response from the Fed. FT

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