Banks and the Economy

Builder Confidence Declined in February

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index fell to 65 in February, a 2 point decrease from January’s reading of 67. “While builders remain optimistic, we are seeing the numbers settling back into a normal range,” said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald, a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. “Regulatory burdens remain a major challenge to our ...

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Help Us Help U.S.

By Dorothy Savarese Help me help you. That’s not only one of several memorable lines made famous by the movie Jerry Maguire. It’s also the essence of the message ABA has sent to our nation’s elected leaders. In a letter to President Donald Trump the day after his election, and in our communications with the 115th Congress, ABA has asked ...

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Producer Prices Increased 0.6% in January

Producer prices rose 0.6% in January, seasonally adjusted, after climbing 0.2% in December, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Producer prices rose 1.6% for the twelve months ended January 2017. The index for final demand goods rose 1.0% in January, the largest jump since May 2015. The increase was led by a 4.7% rise in the index for ...

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Small Business Optimism Rose in January

The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index increased 0.1 points in January to 105.9, the highest reading since December 2004. Five of the ten index components rose, while five declined. All of the index components have held near record highs since the remarkable increases after the election. Reported job creation has started to pick up, as 53% of businesses reported hiring ...

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Consumer Credit Growth Slowed in December

Consumer credit increased at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.5% in December, down from an 8.1% rate in November. Total outstanding credit increased $14.2 billion during the month (compared with $25.2 billion in November) to $3.76 trillion. Revolving credit rose at an annual rate of 2.9% to $995.5 billion, compared to a large 14.4% increase in November. Non-revolving credit ...

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International Trade Balance Narrowed in December

The U.S. international trade deficit narrowed in December to $44.3 billion, down from $45.7 billion in November, according to the U.S. Census Bureau of Economic Analysis. The contraction reflected a $5.0 billion increase in exports along with a $3.6 billion increase in imports. The goods deficit decreased $1.2 billion to $65.7 billion, while the services surplus rose $0.3 billion to ...

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Fed Survey: CRE Tightening Trend Continues

Bankers continued tightening credit for commercial real estate loans and consumer loans in the last three months while holding steady on other business loans and easing credit standards very slightly in their home mortgage portfolios, according to the Federal Reserve’s latest senior loan officer survey released today.

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