Weekly economic update

Economic Update for November 20, 2017   |   Download PDF

Highlights of news-making events of the past week, from the economy and profits to Europe and interest rates.


The BLS reported that the CPI rose 0.1% and core CPI increased 0.2% in October. Import prices advanced and export prices were flat in October, the Commerce Dept. noted. Housing starts jumped 13.7%, and retail sales grew 0.2%. The Fed stated industrial production rose 0.9% in October. China's National Bureau of Statistics reported industrial production increased 6.2%.


Initial jobless claims rose 10,000 to 249,000 in the week ended November 11, 2017, according to the Labor Department. The four-week moving average was 237,750.


As of November 8, 2017, of the 408 S&P 500 Index companies reporting third-quarter earnings, 297 — or 72.7% — beat analysts' expectations, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.


The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index rose to 52.1 in the week ended November 12, 2017, from 51.5 in the prior week.


The ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment for Germany improved in November. The U.K.'s Office for National Statistics stated that retail sales increased 0.3% in October. Eurostat reported industrial production declined 0.6% in the euro area in September. The euro area also posted a trade surplus in September. GDP increased 0.6% in the euro area in the third quarter.


The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note declined.


  • Uncertain timeline on key U.S. pro-growth measures
  • Leading indicators of Chinese nominal growth rolling over
  • Mismatch between low volatility market environment and policy uncertainty

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All economic and performance information is historical and does not guarantee future results. The views and opinions expressed are those of Putnam Investments, are subject to change with market conditions, and are not meant as investment advice.