U.S. Economic News

December 7, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

Initial jobless claims decreased 2,000 to 236,000 last week.  The four-week moving average fell 750 to 241,500. DOL Report

U.S. News

The Washington Post reports that Senate Republicans are considering a corporate tax rate above 20% in order to generate extra revenue for last-minute changes to the tax bill. Multiple parties have expressed openness to a corporate tax rate above 20% to generate extra revenue for the repeal of the corporate alternative minimum tax, a tax provision that threatens to render certain research tax credits obsolete. WaPo

According to The Wall Street Journal, the Senate has voted to start formal tax-bill negotiations with the House of Representatives. The two chambers still face significant differences between their bills, including deductions for state taxes, individual and corporate alternative minimum taxes, and the possible repeal of the estate tax. WSJ

Heather Gillers and Melanie Evans of The Wall Street Journal write that hospitals and universities are rushing to issue tax-free debt before Congress passes a tax bill. Borrowers issued $4 billion in tax-exempt private activity bonds last week, triple the amount from the same period a year ago, as Congress edges closer to eliminating the tax-exempt status of private-activity bonds. WSJ