U.S. Economic News

August 21, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index fell from 0.16 to -0.01 in July.  The production, sales, and personal consumption and housing components made negative contributions, while the employment component made the sole positive contribution. Chicago Fed Report

U.S. News

Lynn Cook of the Wall Street Journal writes that many smaller American oil firms are increasingly forgoing expensive shale fracking projects in favor of conventional drilling. Companies have been able to reactivate old wells and extract oil profitably at prices as low as $30 a barrel. WSJ

The Wall Street Journal reports that as U.S. natural gas exports begin to arrive in former Soviet-bloc countries, Russian energy companies are starting to fight back. While the U.S. hopes to loosen Russia’s dominance of the European energy market, Russian state-owned companies have been lowering prices, investing in liquefied natural gas facilities, and building new pipelines. WSJ

According to the Wall Street Journal, investors are grappling with increased financial-market volatility and declining performance as doubts about the administration’s legislative agenda emerge. Among the weakest performers in recent weeks are small, domestic firms who would stand to gain from significant tax reform and infrastructure spending. WSJ

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