February 2018

Employment: Initial, Continuous Jobless Claims and Net Job Creation

Seasonally adjusted, (SA) initial claims for unemployment insurance fell by 9,000 to 221,000. The four week moving average (4WMA) was 224,000, 17.0% lower than for the same period last year. Moody’s economist project an unemployment rate of 3.5% by the end of the year as layoffs are low and hiring remains firm. Continuous claims as [...]

Employment by Industry

The economy created 148,000 jobs in January, 38.5% of these were in the Goods producing industries and 61.5% in Service providing sector. The total number of seasonally adjusted (SA), non-farm people employed in the U.S. in January was 147.810 million (M), an increase of 0.14% month on month, (m/m). Over the past 12 months the [...]

The Baltic Dry Index

The three month moving average (3MMA), of the Baltic Dry Index (BDI), for January fell 5.7% to 1,413 month on month (m/m). On a 3MMA year on year basis, (y/y), the BDI was 40.8% higher. The BDI has averaged 1,175 over the past 12 months, ranging from a low of 759 in February to a [...]

ISM Non-Manufacturing Index

The Institute for Supply Management’s non-manufacturing composite index got off to a strong start in 2018, climbing 3.9 points in January to 59.9, besting analyst’s expectations. The strong advance in the index points to continued growth in the nonmanufacturing segment as the fundamentals remain strong for the sector. The ISM nonmanufacturing survey measures the rate [...]

Oil and Gas Rotary Rig Counts

Active U.S. rigs climbed for the second week in a row per Baker Hughes. The total number of operating rigs in the U.S. the week as of February 2nd was 946, 765 oil and 181 gas. In percentage terms, on a month on month, (m/m) basis, oil rigs were up 3.1%, (+23 rigs) and gas [...]

Portland Cement Shipments

U.S. national Portland cement shipments in November totaled 8.81 million, (Mt) short tons. For the three months total (3MMT), ending November, cement shipments were up slightly year on year, (y/y). Five of the nine census regions posted higher 3MMT cement shipments y/y. Figure 1 shows the three month moving average shipments in tons per month on [...]

Currency Report

The dollar Broad Index posted a reading of 94.35 on February 2nd, its lowest point since June 2015. Over the past 12 months, the dollar broad index has ranged between 94.35, (today) and 101.88, (February 2017). On a twelve moving average, (12MMA) year on year, (y/y) comparison, the dollar was down 8.6% against the Broad [...]

ISM Manufacturing Index

The January Purchasers Manager’s Index fell-back 0.6 point month on month, (m/m) to 59.1, lower than December’s revised 59.7, but still topping analysts’ expectations. The index has been greater than 50, (>50 = expansion) for 17 consecutive months. The new orders sub-index scored a 64.5, its eighth month in a row over 60. Conditions are [...]

­­­Construction Put-in-Place, (CPIP)

Total U.S. construction spending came in above the consensus estimate in December. This was the fifth month in a row of gains in construction expenditures. Census Bureau non-seasonally adjusted (NSA), constant dollar CPIP data showed that December’s twelve month total, (12MT) construction expenditures grew by 3.6% year on year (y/y), to $1226.9 billion (B). On a [...]