Key Economic Indicators – January 21, 2013

  • Advance estimates of retail and food services sales for December were up 0.5% from November, and were up 4.7% from December 2011.
  • Total manufacturing and trade sales for November were up 1.0% from October, while inventories were up 0.3%.
  • Total Industrial production increased 0.3% in December, following a 1.0% increase in the previous month.
  • The federal government budget ran a deficit of $0.3 billion in December, after a deficit of $172.1 billion in the previous month.
  • Treasury International Capital reported net foreign purchases of long-term securities of $61.5 billion in November, compared with net purchases of $25.4 billion in the previous month.
  • Housing starts increased 12.1% in December, following a 4.3% decrease in the previous month.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed fixed mortgage rates largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • Mortgage applications increased 15.2% from a week earlier week, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey.
  • The producer price index for finished goods (headline index) decreased 0.2% in December, while the core index increased 0.1%. The producer price index for finished goods increased 1.3% from December 2011 to December 2012.
  • The consumer price index (headline index) held steady in December, while the core index, increased 0.1%. The consumer price index increased 1.7% for the 12-month period ending in December. The core index rose 1.9% during the same period.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased by 37 thousand to 335 thousand in the week ending January 12.
  • Real average hourly earnings for all employees increased 0.3% from November to December.
  • The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment, preliminary, was 71.3 in early January, 1.6 points below the full month reading for December.
  • The January Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicated that the conditions for New York manufacturers continued to decline at a modest pace.
  • The Philadelphia FED business outlook survey for January reported that manufacturing activity declined modestly, following reported increases in business activity in late 2012.
  • The FED’s “Beige Book” indicated that overall economic activity expanded since the last report, with all twelve Districts characterizing the pace of growth as either modest or moderate.

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