• Real GDP increased at an annual rate of 33.4% in the third quarter of 2020, according to the “third” estimate by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). In the second quarter, real GDP decreased 31.4%.  In the second estimate, released a month ago, the increase in real GDP was 33.1%. It was stated: “The increase in third quarter GDP reflected continued efforts to reopen businesses and resume activities that were postponed or restricted due to COVID-19. The full economic effects of the COVID19 pandemic cannot be quantified in the GDP estimate for the third quarter of 2020 because the impacts are generally embedded in source data and cannot be separately identified.”
  • Real final sales of domestic product (GDP less change in private inventories) increased 25.9% in the third quarter, in contrast to a decrease of 28.1% in the previous quarter.
  • Real gross domestic income (GDI) increased 25.8% in the third quarter, compared with a decrease of 32.6% in the second quarter. The average of real GDP and real GDI, a supplemental measure of U.S. economic activity that equally weights GDP and GDI, increased 29.6% in the third quarter, compared with a decrease of 32.0% in the second quarter.
  • The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 3.3% in the third quarter, compared with a decrease of 1.4% in the previous quarter. The personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index increased 3.7%, compared with a decrease of 1.6%. Excluding food and energy prices, the PCE price index increased 3.4%, compared with a decrease of 0.8%.
  • Profits from current production (corporate profits with inventory valuation adjustment and capital consumption adjustment) increased $499.6 billion in the third quarter, compared with a decrease of $208.9 billion in the second quarter. Profits of domestic financial corporations increased $12.1 billion in the third quarter, in contrast to an increase of $26.5 billion in the second quarter. Profits of domestic nonfinancial corporations increased $436.2 billion, compared with a decrease of $89.5 billion. Rest-of-the-world profits increased $51.3 billion, in contrast to a decrease of $89.5 billion.
  • Personal income decreased 1.1% in November, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Disposable personal income (DPI) decreased 1.2% and personal consumption expenditures (PCE) decreased 0.4%. Real DPI (disposable income in chained 2012 dollars) decreased 1.3%, and real PCE decreased 0.4%. The PCE price index held steady in November for the second consecutive month. Excluding food and energy, the PCE price index also held steady in November for the second consecutive month. The PCE price index increased 1.1% from a year ago, while the core (PCE excluding food and energy) price index increased 1.4%. It was noted: “The November estimate for personal income and outlays was impacted by the response to the spread of COVID-19. Federal economic recovery payments slowed as pandemic-related assistance programs continued to wind down. The full economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic cannot be quantified in the personal income and outlays estimate because the impacts are generally embedded in source data and cannot be separately identified.”
  • Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased in all 50 states and the District of Columbia in the third quarter of 2020, as real GDP for the nation increased at an annual rate of 33.4%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The percent change in real GDP in the third quarter ranged from 52.2% in Nevada to 19.2% in the District of Columbia. Healthcare and social assistance, durable goods manufacturing, and accommodation and food services were the leading contributors to the increase in real GDP nationally. Accommodation and food services was the leading contributor to the increase in Nevada.
  • New orders for manufactured durable goods in November increased 0.9%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, following a 1.8% October increase.  Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.4%.  Excluding defense, new orders increased 0.7%.  Shipments of manufactured durable goods in November increased 0.3%, following an increase of 1.5% in the previous month. Year-to-date, new orders for manufactured durable goods decreased 8.0% and shipments decreased 5.9% from the same period in 2019.
  • Sales of new single family houses in November 2020 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 841thousand, according to the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, 11.0% below the previous month, but  20.8% above a year ago. The median sales price of new houses sold in November 2019 was $335.8 thousand 2.2% above a year ago. The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of November was 286 thousand.  This represents a supply of 4.1 months at the current sales rate, compared with 5.6 months in November 2019.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed mortgage rates hit another record low. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 2.66% for the week ending December 24, down from last week when it averaged 2.67%. This was the lowest rate in the survey’s history which dates to 1971. A year ago, at this time, the 30-year fixed rate averaged 3.74%. The 15-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 2.19%, down from last week when it averaged 2.21%. A year ago, at this time, the 15-year fixed rate averaged 3.19%.
  • Mortgage applications increased 0.8% from one week earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending December 18, 2020.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased 89 thousand to 803 thousand in the week ending December 19. The 4-week moving average was 818.25 thousand, an increase of 4 thousand from the previous week’s revised average. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment (ongoing) during the week ending December 12 was 5,337 thousand, a decrease of 170 thousand from the previous week’s revised level. The 4-week moving average was 5,538 thousand, a decrease of 188 thousand from the previous week’s revised average. The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.6% for the week ending December 12, a decrease of 0.2 percentage point from the previous week’s unrevised rate.
  • There were 79,966,148 COVID-19 confirmed cases in the world, 1,752,674 deaths, and 45,114,894 recovered, according to Johns Hopkins University, Coronavirus Resource Center (access date and time: 12/26/2020, 11:00 EST). In the United States, there are 18,768,116 confirmed cases, 330,340 deaths, and no figure for recovered cases. However, there are recovered figures for US states, but not for the US. There is something wrong with “recovered” figures. There is a significant drop in the number of recovered. It was 46,857,548 two weeks ago (12/12/2020) in the World and 6,246,605 in the US. Regardless of data issues, the world is still struggling to control the spread of the virus.

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