U.S. Economic News

June 13, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index was unchanged at 104.5 in May, maintaining its post-election highs. Five of the components rose, four of the components fell, and one was unchanged.  NFIB Report
The headline Producer Price Index (“PPI”) for final demand was unchanged in May and is up 2.4% since May of last year.  
The core — which removes the volatile prices of food, energy, and trade services — fell 0.1% but is up 2.1% on the year.  BLS Report

U.S. News

Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said again on Monday that the U.S. government can be funded through the beginning of September and that Congress should raise the debt ceiling before leaving for its August recess. While urging Congress to act before August, Secretary Mnuchin did not give a specific date after which the government would be forced to default. WSJ

Sarah Carney of the Wall Street Journal writes that a shortage of credit to many companies after the recent financial crisis could explain as much as one-third of the productivity slowdown in advanced economies. Firms whose balance sheets were laden with debt following the financial crisis were less able to borrow for investments in software, buildings, and research and development, thereby slowing total factor productivity growth. WSJ