U.S. Economic Indicators

The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index rose 1.6 points to 104.3 in January as six components improved, two weakened, and two were unchanged. Sales expectations and earnings trends improved significantly, while expectations for better business conditions weakened slightly. NFIB Report

The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (“JOLTS”), a closely-watched measure of labor market health, indicated that the number of job openings fell 364,000 to 6.4 million in DecemberThe number of hires was little changed at 5.9 million, while the quits rate was unchanged at 2.3 percent. BLS Report

U.S. News

According to the New York Times, Fed Chair Jerome Powell will testify before Congress this week that the Chinese coronavirus epidemic could cause disruptions that spill over to the rest of the global economy, while signaling that the central bank is still comfortable holding interest rates steady for now. His prepared remarks also include a warning about the size of the federal government’s debt, arguing that a more sustainable federal budget would help ensure economic growth over the long term. NYT