U.S. Economic News

August 30, 2016

U.S. Economic Indicators

The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index increased in August to its highest level in nearly a year, as the Present Situation Index rose from 118.8 to 123.0 and the Expectations Index rose 4.4 points to 86.4.  Short-term expectations regarding business and employment conditions improved considerably from July, suggesting the possibility of a moderate pick-up in growth in the coming months.  Conference Board Report

U.S. Economic News

According to the Wall Street Journal, U.S. companies are struggling to find workers who have strong “soft skills” such as communication, initiative, and problem solving.  Of the 900 executives surveyed by WSJ last year, 92% said soft skills were equally or more important than technical skills — a finding that is increasingly relevant as the U.S. labor market tightens.  WSJ
 
A research firm founded by two former Census Bureau employees estimates that real median household income in the U.S. grew nearly 3.8% in 2015, the single largest annual gain since 2000. 
The authors say that persistently low inflation stemming from falling energy prices has driven the rise in real income over the last full calendar year.  NYT

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