U.S. Economic News

August 18, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

The University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index rose 4.2 points to 97.6 in the preliminary August reading and is up 7.8 points on the year.  The Index of Consumer Expectations jumped to 89.0 but The Current Economic Conditions Index fell 2.4 points to 111.0.  Report

U.S. News

The Wall Street Journal reports that discount clothing stores are proving surprisingly resilient even as the brick-and-mortar retail sector faces challenges from online shopping. Experts say that, while online retailers are continually gaining market share, consumers will continue to favor discount brick-and-mortar retailers as long as prices are competitive. WSJ

According to the Wall Street Journal, new research finds that older students tend to perform better academically. The researchers also found evidence to suggest that the oldest children are more likely to attend college and to graduate from a selective college than the youngest children in a given age cohort. WSJ

Diane Coyle of the Financial Times writes that the increasing concentration of U.S. tech firms is forcing economists to reconsider whether excessive market power is beneficial to consumers. While in the past greater monopoly power often led to higher prices for consumers, economists are unsure how the growing market power of tech firms will affect consumers. FT