Leading Economic Index rose 0.4 in November, suggesting continued growth into 2018

The U.S. LEI rose again in November, suggesting that solid economic growth will continue into the first half of 2018. In recent months, unemployment insurance claims have returned to pre-hurricane levels. In addition, improving financial indicators, new orders in manufacturing and historically high consumer sentiment have propelled the U.S. LEI even higher.



Third quarter GDP rose at 3.2 percent in third and final estimate

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 3.2 percent in the third quarter of 2017 according to the “third” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. With this third estimate for the third quarter, personal consumption expenditures increased less than previously estimated, but the general picture of economic growth remains the same.



October FHFA House Price Index up 0.5 percent from September and 6.6 percent year-on-year

The FHFA House Price Index (HPI) reported  a 0.5 percent  increase in U.S. house prices in October from the previous month.  From October 2016 to October 2017, house prices were up 6.6 percent.



Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index falls from 53 to 47 in December

Americans’ outlook for the U.S. economy fell in December to match the weakest for the year and a weekly measure of confidence cooled to a two-month low, even as both gauges remain high by historical standards.



Mortgage applications fall 4.9 percent in latest report

The Market Composite Index decreased 4.9 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier, with purchase loans down 6 percent and refinances falling 3 percent.  The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 4.16 percent from 4.20 percent.



Initial unemployment claims rise 20,000 in latest report

In the week ending December 16, initial unemployment claims were 245,000, an increase of 20,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 225,000. The 4-week moving average was 236,000, an increase of 1,250 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 234,750.


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