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Economic Update for April 21, 2014
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Highlights of news-making events of the past week, from the economy and profits to Europe and interest rates.


The BLS reported both the CPI and Core CPI increased 0.2% in March. The Commerce Dept. noted retail sales rose 1.1% and housing starts rose 2.8% in March. Business inventories were up 0.4% in February. The Fed noted industrial production rose 0.7% in March. China's National Bureau of Statistics reported the GDP rose 7.4% year-over-year in the first quarter.


Initial jobless claims rose by 2,000 to 304,000 in the week ended April 12, 2014, according to the Labor Department. The four-week moving average was 312,000.


Of the 26 S&P 500 Index companies reporting first-quarter earnings as of April 10, 2014, 14 beat analysts' estimates, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.


The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index fell to -29.1 in the week ended April 13, 2014, from -31.9 in the prior week.


Eurostat found euro area inflation was 0.5% in March, down from 0.7% in February, and, in a first estimate, the euro area had a trade surplus in February. Also in February, industrial production rose by 0.2% in the euro area. The ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment for Germany edged lower in April. Germany's Federal Statistical Office found producer prices fell in March.


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


  • Interest-rate volatility as the Fed tapers quantitative easing policies
  • Geopolitical risk in Eastern Europe

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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