Key Economic Indicators – October 29, 2012

  • Real GDP increased at an annual rate of 2.0% in the third quarter of 2012, after increasing at 1.3% in the previous quarter. The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 1.5% in the third quarter, compared to an increase of 0.7% in the previous quarter.
  • Personal income increased 0.4%, in September, while personal consumption expenditures increased 0.8%. The price index for personal consumption expenditures (headline index) rose 0.4% in September, while the core index increased 0.1%.
  • New orders for manufactured durable goods increased 9.9% in September, while shipments increased 0.8% in September.
  • September new home sales increased 5.7% to an annualized rate of 389 thousand units. The median sales price of new houses sold was $242.4 thousand, 11.7% above the September 2011.
  • U.S. House prices rose 0.7% on a seasonally adjusted basis from July to August, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) monthly House Price Index. For the 12 months ending in August, U.S. prices rose 4.7%.
  • The Pending Home Sales Index, a leading indicator for the housing sector, edged up 0.3% to a reading of 99.5 in September, according to the National Association of Realtors.
  • The 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 3.41% for the week ending October 25, up from last week when it averaged 3.37%.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased by 23 thousand to 369 thousand in the week ending October 20.
  • The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment rose to 82.6 in October, its highest level since September 2007.
  • The Federal Open Market Committee decided to keep its target for the federal funds rate at 0 to 0.25%, and indicated that it is anticipated that economic conditions are likely to warrant exceptionally low levels for the federal funds rate at least through mid-2015.

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