Economic Update for September 24, 2018
Highlights of news-making events of the past week, from the economy and profits to Europe and interest rates.
- Existing home sales remained flat in August, the National Association of Realtors found.
- Housing starts jumped 9.2% in August, the Census Bureau reported.
- The Conference Board Leading Economic Index increased in August.
- Initial jobless claims declined by 3,000 to 201,000 in the week ended September 15, 2018, the Labor Department reported.
- As of September 13, 2018, of the 499 S&P 500 Index companies reporting second-quarter earnings, 399 — or 79.9% — beat analysts’ estimates, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.
- The European Commission’s Flash Consumer Confidence Indicator for the euro area decreased in September.
- Construction output increased by 0.3% in the euro area in July, Eurostat reported.
- Euro area annual inflation fell to 2.0% in August from 2.1% in July, Eurostat stated.
- Producer price inflation in the United Kingdom declined to 2.9% in August from 3.1% in July, according to the Office for National Statistics.
- The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose.
- The Bank of Japan held rates steady.
- The strengthening U.S. dollar, widening credit spreads, and higher oil prices are putting pressure on select emerging-market countries.
- Worries of dwindling global spare capacity in oil production may cause prices to spike, risking an inflation scare.
- The Fed appears to be on course to invert the yield curve.