U.S. Economic News

December 15, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

Industrial production edged up 0.2% in November (up 3.4% Y/Y), after rising 1.2% (revised) in October.  Capacity utilization inched up 0.1 point to 77.1 in November.  Fed Report
The December Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicated that industrial activity in the New York region grew at a solid rate, as the headline index fell slightly to 18.0, still among the highest levels in three years. 
The new orders index held steady 19.5, the shipments index edged up to 22.4, and the index for number of employees fell to 5.1; meanwhile, hours worked remained unchanged.  NY Fed Report

U.S. News

Ben Eisen of The Wall Street Journal writes that the last time policymakers ignored the flattening of the yield curve the U.S. economy was quick to enter a recession. While Fed Chair Janet Yellen says that there is reason to believe that the relationship between the yield curve and the probability of a recession may have changed, Eisen reminds readers that the last time policymakers made the same argument the U.S. entered a deep recession soon after. WSJ

The Wall Street Journal reports that several Republican lawmakers have expressed doubts about the tax-reform process moving through Congress. Some senators have signaled opposition to the bill because they wish to see an expanded child tax credit, while other key senators have held back support for the bill until they are able to read the final version in its entirety. WSJ