Key Economic Indicators – February 11, 2013

  • Sales of domestic cars increased 1.4% in January, following a 0.6% decrease in the previous month. Total light vehicle (cars and light trucks) sales decreased 6.0% in January, after a 1.0% decrease in the previous month. Sales were 15.231 million units in January, at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, compared to 13.929 million in January of 2012.
  • New orders for manufactured goods increased 1.8% in December, while shipments increased 0.4%.
  • Sales of merchant wholesalers in December were up less than 0.1%, while inventories were down 0.1%.
  • In December international trade deficit was $38.5 billion, $10.1 billion less than the revised November figure.
  • Fourth quarter productivity decreased 2.0% (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the non-farm business sector, following a 3.2% increase in the previous period. Unit labor costs increased 4.5% in the fourth quarter, following a 2.3% decrease in the previous quarter.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased 5 thousand to 366 thousand in the week ending February 2.
  • December consumer credit outstanding increased at an annual rate of 6.3%.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed fixed mortgage rates either unchanged or lower.
  • Mortgage applications increased 3.4% from a week earlier week, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending February 1.
  • In January, the Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) non-manufacturing survey results indicated growth in the non-manufacturing business activity for the 37th consecutive month.

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