Economic Data Roundup (08/25/2017)

8/25/17 12:00 PM

iStock-500455316-1.jpgA new report from the Census Bureau showed that orders for U.S.-manufactured durable goods (items meant to last at least three years) plunged in July by $16.7 billion (6.8 percent) to $229.2 billion. That was the largest headline decline since August 2014 but not too surprising following the prior month’s 6.4 percent jump related to a one-time (131 percent) spike in aircraft orders. Moreover, “core” durable goods orders, which exclude the volatile transportation component, rose by 0.5 percent in July, better than economists anticipated and the sixth monthly gain this year. Orders for nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft, i.e. core capital expenditures, an important proxy for U.S. business investment, lifted by 0.4 percent in July, slightly worse than forecast but still a welcome rebound after June’s unexpected decline. Altogether this was another solid report on the U.S. economy that suggests gross domestic product (GDP) growth continued to improve in the third quarter of 2017. In fact, Goldman Sachs raised its Q3 GDP growth estimate to 3.0 percent from 2.8 percent immediately following the release of the durable goods data, citing “solid growth in core capital goods shipments and durable goods inventories.”

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Sources: Econoday, ZH, U.S. Census Bureau, FRBSL

Post author: Charles Couch