Key Economic Indicators – February 16, 2015

  • Advance estimates of retail and food services sales for January were down 0.8% from December, but were up 3.3% from January 2014.
  • Total manufacturing and trade sales decreased 0.9% in December, while inventories increased 0.1%. Both manufacturers’ sales and retailers’ sales were down 1.1%, while merchant wholesalers’ sales were down 0.4%.
  • The federal government budget ran a deficit of $17.5 billion in January, after a surplus of $1.9 billion in the previous month.
  • The import price index decreased 2.8% in January, while export prices decreased 2.0%. The fuel import price index decreased 16.9%, while the non-fuel import price index decreased 0.7%. The overall import price index decreased 8.0% from January 2014. Agricultural export prices decreased 1.2%, while non-agricultural export prices decreased 2.1%. The price index for overall exports decreased 5.4% from January 2014.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance increased 25 thousand to 304 thousand in the week ending February 7. The 4-week moving average decreased 3.25 thousand to 289.75 thousand.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed fixed mortgage rates moving higher from the previous week, but remaining near their May 23, 2013 lows.
  • Mortgage applications decreased 9.0% from a week earlier week, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending February 6.
  • The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment, preliminary, slipped to 93.6 in early February from 98.1 in January.

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