Strong auto sales were a big factor01/13/2017 | ConsumerAffairs
A sizable advance in auto sales helped push overall retail sales higher in December.
The Commerce Depart reports sales totaled a seasonally adjusted $469.1 billion last month -- up 0.6% from November.
The increase of 2.4% in auto sales led the December advance, followed by gas station (+2.0%), non-store retailers (+1.3%), and furniture and home furnishing stores (+0.5).
Sales fell at miscellaneous store retailers (-1.0%), restaurants and bars (-0.8%), department stores (-0...
Job creation during the month came in below expectations01/06/2017 | ConsumerAffairs
The nation's unemployment rate ticked up to 4.7% in December from November's 4.6% as the economy created 156,000 nonfarm payroll jobs -- well short of the Briefing.com consensus estimate of 175,000.
According to figures released by the Labor Department (DOL), health care (+43,000) and social assistance (+20,000) accounted for a good chunk of last months employment gains. Advances were also seen in employment at food services and drinking places(+30,000), transportation a...
New orders and production expanded, while employment and inventories contracted08/01/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Another month of expansion -- the fifth in a row -- for the manufacturing sector of the economy.
At the same time, according to the Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) Report On Business, the overall economy grew for the 86th consecutive month.
The July Purchasing Manager's Index registered 52.6% last month – down 0.6% from June. A reading above 50% indicates growth, while anything below that mark suggests contraction.
The Orders Index dipped 0.1% to 56.9%, while the P...
Nearly a half million young adults found work last month08/09/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
The kids are on the job.
An analysis of government data by outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas finds the number of teenagers finding summer jobs this year is up 15.4%, or 1.3 million, between May and July -- the highest level since 2013.
The summer total was helped by heavier-than-usual teen employment gains in July.
A total of 492,000 teens found jobs in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), up 33% from a year ago and 25% higher than the 392,...
Corporate profits took a hit too12/22/2015 | ConsumerAffairs
The final look at the economy for the third quarter was generally dissatisfying.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reports the "third"estimate of real gross domestic product (GDP) -- the value of the goods and services produced by the nation’s economy less the value of the goods and services used up in production, adjusted for price changes -- increased at an annual rate of 2.0% after growing 2.1% in the “second” estimate and 3.9% in the second quarter.
All told, that...
It's the lowest total ever for that month01/07/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
What seems to be a growing reluctance to announce firings during the holidays, along with a stronger economy, helped December experience the lowest number of monthly job cuts in more than 15 years.
Outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas reports U.S.-based employers announced planned workforce reductions totaling just 23,622 last month, down 24% from November and 28% below the 32,640 terminations announced in December 2014.
Not only was December the lowest j...
The move to online shopping appears to be one reason for the shift01/14/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
It looked good at the start, but then it fizzled.
According to an analysis of non-seasonally adjusted government employment data by outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, holiday hiring by retailers fell short in November and December after getting off to a strong start in October.
The final tally shows seasonal employment gains last year were down 1.2% from 2014, making it the second consecutive year in which holiday hires declined.
Retail employment grew ...
Still, there has been expansion for the last six years02/04/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
We've seen growth for six years in a row for the non-manufacturing sector of the economy.
The latest Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Non-Manufacturing Report On Business put out the nation's supply executive and purchasing managers say the Non-manufacturing Index (NMI) registered 53.5% in January, down 2.3% from December. That's the lowest level in two years, but the 72nd consecutive month of growth.
The New Orders Index was down 2.4% to 56.5%, the Employment Index ...
The unemployment rate dipped slightly02/05/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Another 151,000 people found work in January, well below the pace of December in which 262,000 jobs were created. That December figure, by the way, was revised down by 30,000 from the initial estimate. Economists at Briefing.com had projected the creation of 188,000 jobs.
In its report, the Department of Labor (DOL) also said the unemployment rate inched down 0.1% to 4.9%.
Job gains occurred in several industries, including retail trade (+58,000), food services and drinki...
Eleven of 18 industries reported expansion09/07/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Even though the pace slowed, economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in August for the 79th consecutive month.
According to the latest Non-Manufacturing Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Report On Business, the NMI registered 51.4% last month, down 4.1% from July.
A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while below that suggests contraction.
The New Orders Index dropped 8.9%, to 51.4%; the Employment Index registered 50.7%, off 0.7%; and the Prices Index...
Initial jobless claims inched higher last week09/29/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
The third and final look at how the nation's economy was doing in the second quarter is a bit brighter than the earlier estimates.
According to the Commerce Department, real gross domestic product (GDP) -- the value of the goods and services produced by the nation’s economy -- grew at an annual rate of 1.4%.
An earlier look at how the economy was performing put expansion at an annual rate of 1.1%. This latest estimate is based on more complete source data than was availabl...
A tightening labor market gets the blame10/05/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Private sector employment eased a bit in September.
According to the ADP National Employment Report, produced by the payroll firm in collaboration with Moody's Analytics, the economy created 154,000 jobs from August to September.
There were 177,000 new jobs the month before.
"Job gains in September eased a bit when compared to the past 12-month average," said ADP Research Institute Vice President Ahu Yildirmaz. "We also observed softening this month in trade/transportation...
The education sector led the increase10/06/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Employers across the U.S. announced plans to cut their workforces by 44,324 payroll positions in September -- up a whopping 38% from August.
Figures released by outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas show that despite the spike in terminations, cuts were down 25% from September 2015.
So far this year, employers have announced a total of 435,612 planned job cuts, 12% fewer than for the first nine months of the previous year.
“Heavy job cutting in the energy s...
There were fewer new jobs than analysts expected10/07/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
September turned out to be something of a disappointment in terms of job creation.
The Department of Labor (DOL) reports employers added 156,000 private payroll positions last month after creating 167,000 jobs in August. The consensus forecast for September from Briefing.com was for 176,000 new jobs.
In addition, the unemployment rate edged up to 5.0% from the August reading of 4.9%. That translates to 7.9 million people who are out of work, a figure that has shown little...
Ten of 18 industries reported growth last month11/01/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Economic activity in the manufacturing sector of the economy grew in October at a rate that was slightly faster than the preceding month, as the overall economy grew for the 89th consecutive month.
The latest Manufacturing Institute for Supply Management (ISM) report on business shows the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose 0.4% last month to register 51.9%.
A reading above 50% indicates growth, while anything below that mark suggests contraction.
The New Orders Index sli...
The goods-producing sector actually suffered a decline11/02/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
Due partly to the loss of jobs in the goods-producing sector, the economy produced fewer private payroll positions in October than it did the month before.
According to the October ADP National Employment Report, which is produced by the ADP Research Institute and Moody's Analytics, just 147,000 new jobs were created last month -- 7,000 fewer than in September.
"Job growth remains strong although the pace of growth appears to be slowing,” said Moody's Analytics Chief Econ...
Weakness was spread across most sectors05/04/2016 | ConsumerAffairs
While the nation's job-producing machinery is still running well, there's been something of a slowdown that continued into April.
The ADP National Employment Report finds private-sector employment increased by 156,000 jobs last month, following increases of 194,000 and 214,000 in March and February, respectively.
The report, produced by ADP in collaboration with Moody's Analytics is derived from ADP's actual payroll data, measures the change in total nonfarm private emplo...