Banks and the Economy

Industrial Production Rose 0.2% in July

Industrial production grew 0.2% in July after 0.4% June increase, according to the Federal Reserve. July represented the sixth consecutive month without a decline. Manufacturing output fell 0.1% in July after a 0.2% increase in June. Production of durable goods decreased 0.5%, while nondurables edged up 0.4% during the month. Capacity utilization for manufacturing decreased by 0.1 percentage point to ...

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Fed Divided Over Timing of Next Rate Hike

The Federal Open Market Committee was divided over when it will next raise the target federal funds rate, which they decided to hold at 1 to 1.25 percent, according to minutes from the FOMC’s July 25-26 meeting. “Some” FOMC members expressed uncertainty about inflation, saying that the committee “could afford to be patient” in deciding when to raise rates, while ...

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Housing Starts Declined in July

Housing starts decreased to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.155 million in July, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. The decline was 4.8% below the revised June rate of 1.213 million and is 5.6% below the July 2016 rate. Housing activity decreased in three of the four regions with only the South showing growth, increasing 0.6%. The Northeast ...

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Homebuilder Confidence Soared in August

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index rose to 68 in August, a four point increase from June’s reading. “Our members are encouraged by rising demand in the new-home market,” said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald, a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. “This is due to ongoing job and economic growth, attractive mortgage rates, and growing ...

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Retail Sales Jumped to 7-Month High in July

There were $478.9 billion in retail and food service sales in July, up 0.6% from the previous month and 4.2% from July 2016, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. July’s retail sales were the largest gain in seven months. June’s number was upwardly revised to reflect 0.3% growth. Core retail sales – excluding automobiles and parts – grew 0.5%. Year-over-year ...

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BAFT Outlines Priorities for Modernizing U.S. Trade Policy

As the Trump administration considers strategies for modernizing U.S. trade policy, BAFT -- ABA’s global transaction banking subsidiary -- wrote to policymakers outlining several priorities to promote free and fair trade and increase economic growth and job creation.

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Consumer Prices Increased 0.1% in July

The Consumer Price Index grew 0.1% in July on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Over the last 12 months, the all-items index rose 1.7%. Prices for all items less food and energy, the “core CPI,” increased 0.1% in July, the fourth month in a row it increased that amount. The index rose 1.7% for ...

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