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07/08/2015
Market Update

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A rise in initial jobless claims and an unanticipated decline in new jobs suggest slowing in the U.S. labor market, while housing continues to lead the economy. Overseas, falling U.K. exports detracted from first-quarter economic growth, while eurozone manufacturing continued to expand in June.
This Week
  • A rise in initial jobless claims and an unanticipated decline in new jobs suggest slowing in the U.S. labor market, while housing continues to lead the economy. Overseas, falling U.K. exports detracted from first-quarter economic growth, while eurozone manufacturing continued to expand in June.
  • Nonfarm payrolls expanded by less than projected in June, amid downward revisions to growth in April and May. Wages were unexpectedly flat. Although unemployment fell to 5.3%, from 5.5% in May, labor force participation was at its lowest point since 1977.
  • Initial jobless claims increased by 10,000 to 281,000 for the week ending June 27, resulting in an incremental rise in the four-week moving average (which evens out volatility). Continuing claims (reflecting delayed data) climbed for the week of June 20.
  • Pending home sales for May reached their highest rate since 2006, outpacing projections and rising for the fifth consecutive month. All regions except the Midwest increased in the year over-year — underscoring last week’s positive Existing Home Sales report.
  • Seasonally-adjusted home prices experienced an unanticipated sharp decline in April, according to S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Composite Home Price Index. Eight cities reported contraction, even as prices remained in positive territory, and year-over-year performance ticked downward.
  • U.S. manufacturing decelerated in June by slightly more than expected, driven by a third consecutive monthly drop in exports and reduced capital investment in the energy sector. However, new orders and hiring improved.
  • U.S. factory orders declined further in May, due to falling exports — mainly a 49% reduction in aircraft orders, which also skewed last week’s Durable Goods report. Excluding this historically volatile transportation sector, and despite a double-digit drop in energy equipment (cars, non-defense aircraft), factory orders were unchanged in May.
  • U.S. construction spending surprised in May with a peak not seen since 2008, largely due to non-residential spending. State and local government construction boosted public sector outlays to a seven-month high.
  • The U.K. economy advanced 0.4% in the first quarter — reflecting recent changes in construction output calculations — while falling below the upward-revised fourth-quarter figure of 0.8%. Imports and fixed capital contributed most, while falling exports detracted from greater growth.
  • Eurozone manufacturing advanced in June, surpassing May’s results. The pace of production, new orders and employment reached multi-month highs. Employment gains contributed to a 10-month trend, and manufacturing activity in the second quarter was the strongest in 12 months.

 

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