By the numbers: The economy this week

Update for October 21, 2019

Highlights of key economic statistics from last week compiled by Putnam Investments.

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  • Retail sales fell 0.3% in August, the Census noted in an advance estimate.
  • Business inventories remain unchanged in August, the Census Bureau reported.
  • Housing starts plunged 9.4% in September, according to the Census Bureau.
  • Industrial production declined 0.4% in September, the Federal Reserve stated.


  • Initial jobless claims rose by 4,000 to 214,000 in the week ended October 12, 2019, according to the Labor Department.


  • As of October 10, 2019, of the 23 S&P 500 Index companies reporting third-quarter earnings, 20 beat analysts’ estimates, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.


  • The ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment for Germany declined in October.


  • Eurostat reported that euro area annual inflation declined to 0.8% in September from 1.0% in August.
  • The euro area posted a trade surplus in August, Eurostat found.
  • Euro area industrial production increased 0.4% in August, Eurostat stated.


  • The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note traded in a narrow range.


  • The cumulative effect of tariffs and low corporate confidence will increase pressure on global manufacturing.
  • Brexit, Italian debt dynamics, and a fragile European banking system risk tipping Europe back into recession.
  • Weak stimulus in China thus far is showing little sign of slowing the pace of deceleration.

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.

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