U.S. Economic Indicators

Initial jobless claims rose 53,000 to 253,000 last week. The four-week moving average rose 5,000 to 220,250. DOL Report

New home sales jumped 16.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 657,000 in November, but are 7.7% below the November 2017 rate.  The median sales price fell to $302,400 and the inventory of new homes declined to 6.0 months at the current sales rate. Census Bureau Report

U.S. News

Brian Blackstone reports for the Wall Street Journal that a slowing global economy and low inflation has central banks around the world reconsidering plans to gradually reduce the financial stimulus from markets and the banking system. The Federal Reserve signaled in Wednesday’s policy meeting that they would pause raising rates until it is known if weakness abroad and political uncertainty will drag down U.S. growth. WSJ

According to the Wall Street Journal, China has placed its hopes on another meeting between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping to help solve the trade dispute between the two countries. A high level trade delegation from China has proposed that the presidents meet in the Chinese city Hainan in late February. WSJ

The Wall Street Journal reports that the eurozone economy grew at the weakest pace in four years in 2018, with a further slowdown likely as the currency area grapples with political tensions and weak demand for its exports. The slowdown feeds concerns about the global expansion, which is weakening for various reasons across a number of major countries. WSJ