June 11, 2012
Categories | Economic Update |
The trade deficit decreased to $50.1 billion in April from a revised $52.6 billion in March. Exports fell 0.8% to $182.9 billion. Imports fell 1.7% to $233 billion.
The Institute for Supply Management reported that the monthly composite index of non-manufacturing activity rose to 53.7 in May from 53.5 in April. A reading above 50 signals expansion. It was the 29th straight month of expansion in the services sector.
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending June 1 rose 1.3%. Refinancing applications increased 2%. Purchase volume fell 1.8%.
Wholesalers increased their inventories 0.6% to a record $483.5 billion in April. Sales at the wholesale level rose 1.1% to $415 billion in April. On a year-over-year basis, sales were 6.8% higher since April 2011.
Factory orders fell 0.6% in April to a seasonally adjusted $466 billion, following a revised 2.1% decrease in March. Excluding the volatile transportation sector, orders decreased 1.1% in April.
The Labor Department reported that in the first quarter, productivity fell at an annual rate of 0.9% and labor costs increased at an annual rate of 1.3%.
Retail sales rose 0.4% for the week ending June 2, according to the ICSC-Goldman Sachs index. On a year-over-year basis, retailers saw sales increase 2.8%.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits for the week ending June 2 fell by 12,000 to 377,000 from a revised 389,000 the prior week. Continuing claims for the week ending May 26 rose by 34,000 to 3.293 million.
Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on retail sales on June 13, the consumer price index on June 14 and industrial production on June 15.