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Consumer Confidence Improves In Late Winter
In an economy looking for a touch of good news these days, the Conference Board just provided it, as that research organization reported that its monthly survey on consumer confidence had come in well ahead of expectations and also reversed the prior month's somewhat disappointing performance in this area. Read more
New Home Sales Surge In A Welcome Surprise
New home sales, which had been expected to decline notably in February, instead rose solidly last month to their best level in seven years, or well before the housing market's slump had bottomed out. Furthermore, January's sales were revised higher, making it back-to-back wins for this critical economic sector. Read more
Existing Home Sales Nudge Forward In February 2015

Sales of previously owned homes nudged a bit higher in February, notwithstanding heavy snows in portions of the country, and in some cases, record low or near-record low temperatures. That was a reassuring performance by the recently slumping industry. This latest uptick, comes amid flagging data on housing starts, and was a sign that perhaps this key industry is on the mend, in spite of some disappointing economic data issuances in recent weeks. 

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The Federal Reserve Drops the Word Patient
The Federal Reserve brought its latest two-day FOMC meeting to a close earlier this afternoon and, as expected, dropped the word “patient” in assessing just when it would begin increasing short-term interest rates, namely the federal funds rate. Read more
Housing Starts Tumble In February As Heavy Snows Delay Building
The housing market really took it on the chin last month, as homebuilding tumbled 17% to an annualized rate of 897,000 units. That was down from an upwardly revised 1.08 million building rate in January. (Originally, the January total had been estimated at 1.07 million homes started.) Expectations for February had been for building on 1.04 million homes to commence. This was the lowest building rate in a year. Read more
Industrial Production Inches Ahead, While Factory Usage Ebbs Slightly In February
The nation's economy, which has been evidencing a mixed pattern, overall, recently, has continued in that vein on the industrial front. On point, the industrial production ticked nominally higher last month, gaining a token 0.1%, following back-to-back declines of 0.2% and 0.3%, respectively, in December and January. Read more
Retail Sales Fall For The Third Consecutive Month
At 8:30 A.M. (EDT) this morning, the investment community received a key report on the U.S. economy, and it made for a mostly disappointing reading. Specifically, the Department of Commerce reported that retail sales for the month of February fell 0.6% sequentially, declining for the third consecutive period. Read more
Job Growth Accelerates In February
This morning, the investment community received positive news on the U.S. economy when the Department of Labor released its report on employment and unemployment for the month of February at 8:30 A.M. (EST). Specifically, the report showed that the nation’s nonfarm payrolls increased by 295,000 last month. This comes on the heels of Wednesday’s report from payroll processing giant Automatic Data Processing (ADP) that the private sector had added a seasonally adjusted 212,000 jobs last month. Read more
The Federal Reserve Beige Book Breaks No New Ground
This afternoon, reports from the 12 Federal Reserve Districts were released in the form of the so-called Beige Book, in which it was noted that economic activity continued to expand across most regions of the country from early January to mid-February. Read more
Non Manufacturing Activity Edges Up Slightly In February
The critical services sector continues to acquit itself well. On point, two days after the rate of expansion in manufacturing activity eased a bit, according to data furnished by the Institute for Supply Management, that same trade group noted that the companion survey on non-manufacturing, which covers the services sector, edged upward. Read more
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