The Economic Picture for the week of March 3rd

The Economic Picture for the week of March 3rd

Monday March 3

Personal Income

-Was on the strong side which indicates a good start to Q1 growth

-0.3% increase

-private wages and salaries increased $14.8 billion after a $9.1 billion loss last month

-factors that increased personal income were mostly federal

-Affordable Care Act affected government social benefit payments

-Cost of Living adjustments were made to several federal transfer programs


Personal Spending

-rose 0.4%

-personal spending is the main driver of the U.S. economy

-the rise in spending was more than income which could mean individuals are taking on more debt


Personal Savings Rate

-unchanged from last month

-4.3% of disposable personal income


Construction Spending

-0.1% increase

-down from the month before which had a 1.5% increase

-home building was up 1.1% with single family construction up 2.3% and apartment construction up 1%

-non-residential fell 0.2% and government construction was down 0.8%

-cold weather was probably the cause of the minimal increase


ISM Manufacturing Index

-institute for supply management

-rose to 53.2 from 51.2 the previous month

-readings above 50 indicate expansion in the sector

-Holcomb stated, “The past relationship between the PMI and the overall economy indicates that the PMI for January and February (52.3 percent) corresponds to a 3 percent increase in real gross domestic product (GDP) on an annualized basis


Thursday March 6


Initial Jobless Claims

-hit 3 month low which may suggest some strength in labor market

-fell 26,000 to 323,000



-measures hourly output per worker

-rose at a rate of 1.8% instead of the previously reported 3.2%

-mirrors the economy’s slow growth rate

-productivity only rose 0.5% for all of 2013 which was the smallest since 1993


Unit Labor Costs

-a gauge of the labor-related cost for any given unit of output

-fell at a revised 0.1% which continues to show weak wage related inflation pressures in the economy

-as a whole up 1.1% in 2013 which is the weakest reading since 2010


Factory Orders

-factory orders fell 0.7%

-weakness was led by declines in demand for commercial aircrafts

-orders for capital goods, which is a sign of business investment rose 1.5%

-demand for durable goods were down 1%


Friday March 7


Unemployment rate

-rose to 6.7% from the 5 year low of 6.6%

-employers added 175,000 jobs

-rose as a result of Americans flooding into the labor market to search for work

-labor force participation rate stayed at 63%

-average hourly earnings rose 9 cents

-unemployment rate still misleading as the amount of people that have dropped out of the labor force is not calculated


International Trade Deficit

-little change as a rebound in exports matched an increase in imports

-trade gap is $39.1 billion when adjusted for inflation the gap increased to $48.5 billion

-measure goes into GDP calculation

-exports to China fell 20.8% while imports from the country were up 1.7%


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