U.S. Economic News

July 25, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index increased to 121.1 in July following a marginal decline in June.  The Present Situation Index reached a 16-year high of 147.8 and the Expectations Index rose to 103.3 after cooling last month. Conference Board Report

U.S. News

Neil Irwin of the New York Times questions whether low productivity causes slow growth (the mainstream view held by economists), or slow growth causes low productivity.  In discussing the second possibility, Irwin notes that a tight labor market and rising wages may, “get companies to consider more of those big-ticket innovations that generate productivity growth.” NY Times

The Wall Street Journal reports that although many large businesses have embraced flexible work practices, others are pulling back on remote-work arrangements.  Research has found that telecommuters are often more productive than their in-office colleagues, but managers are increasingly demanding more in-person collaboration and control over the workday. WSJ