It’s Friday and that means it’s time to review the latest economic data and identify which pockets of the economy are heating up and which are slowing down. Don’t worry about catching every headline and every report throughout the week—I recap all of the most important news impacting your wealth right here every Friday. Let’s take a look at this week’s big headlines:
In September, U.S. consumers increased their debt load, predominantly through student and auto loans. Total credit increased at a 6.3% annual rate, or by $19.29 billion, which was above economists’ forecast for an $18.0 billion increase. This represented a slight slowdown from the 8.7% growth seen in August. Meanwhile, August’s figure was revised to a $26.8 billion gain, up from a previously reported $25.9 billion rise. Revolving debt grew by 5.2%, and non-revolving debt increased by 6.7%.
The Commerce Department reported on Wednesday that wholesale inventories increased only 0.1% in September, while sales rose 0.2%. August inventories were revised to show a 0.1% fall, up from the previously reported 0.2% drop. Durable goods inventories dropped 0.4% in September, while non-durable goods inventories jumped 0.9%. Given September’s sales pace, it will now take about 1.33 months to empty shelves.
Initial Claims for Unemployment
For the week ending November 10, initial claims for unemployment dipped to 254,000, beating economists’ estimate for claims to fall to 265,000. This was the lowest reading in one month. The four-week moving average rose 1,750 to 259,750. These results are in keeping with last week’s solid October payroll report.
The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index reported a November reading of 91.6. This was an increase from October’s reading of 87.2. This also topped economists’ expectations of an 87.0 reading. Breaking it down, the consumer expectations sub-index jumped 7.4% to 82.5. Meanwhile, the current conditions index rose 2.6% to 76.8.
That’s all I have for you this week; I’ll be back online on Monday with your weekly ratings changes.
Have a great weekend,