ECONOMIC INDICATORS – THE LATEST UPDATES
NMMA’s Boating News Net — Monthly Economic Report – February 9, 2012 Edition
BOATING NEWS NET is a monthly economic report produced by NMMA, which features industry and general economic indicators that impact your business.
Key report highlights:
The GDP grew 2.8% in the fourth quarter, revealing a surge in private investments, but slightly below analyst projections of 3%. The economy grew 1.7% in 2011, with the largest annual decline in government spending since 1971.
Despite the January reading being the second highest in 8 months, consumer confidence moderated to 61.1 in January as consumer assessments of current situations (including gasoline prices) fell 8 points and short term outlooks ebbed slightly.
CEO confidence rose in the fourth quarter to 49, as current assessments and short-term outlooks of both their own industries and the economy improved from the previous quarter. 32% of CEOs expect economic conditions to improve over the next six months, compared to 19% the prior quarter.
Unemployment continued to decline in January to a near three-year low of 8.3%. The private sector added 257,000 jobs in January and has been posting gains for 22 consecutive months, totaling 3.4 million jobs created since March, 2010. Manufacturing employment has been growing for the fourth consecutive month, adding 257,000 jobs to payrolls in 2011. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Retail sales increased 0.1% in December, totaling $401B. For all of 2011, total retail sales hit a 12-year high, up 7.7% from a year ago. (Source: U.S. Census Bureau)
The purchasing managers index (PMI) grew to a 7-month high of 54.1 in January. Growth in new orders and exports accelerated while inventories continued to be drawn down. A PMI greater than 50 indicates the economy is generally expanding.
Sales of existing single-family homes grew 4.6% in December to 4.1M. New home sales retreated 2.2% in December to 307,000. Housing starts declined 4.1% in December to 657,000.(Source: National Association of Realtors, U.S. Census Bureau)
Light vehicle sales totaled 913,300 in January, up 9% on a rolling twelve month basis compared to a year ago. After adjusting for seasonal factors, annualized light vehicles sales totaled 14.2M. (Source: Autodata Corp.)
Through October, wholesale shipments of boats were up 14% and corresponding dollars were up 23% for NMMA’s control group of manufacturers. Advance data indicates trends will continue through November.(Source: NMMA MSR). On a retail basis, new powerboat registrations were down 2.5% on a rolling 12-month basis through September, compared to a year ago. Advance estimates indicate sales of bellwether states will be up 4.7% in 2011. (Source: NMMA New Powerboat Registrations Report, Info-Link)
Recreational boat and marine engine export volumes were up 13% in the third quarter of 2011, while dollars were up 3% from a year ago. Corresponding import volumes were up 4%; dollars were up 0.8%. (Source: NMMA Export/Import Abstract)
Other Top Economic News:
EMPLOYMENT UP 170,000 IN JANUARY
Reprinted Courtesy BoatingIndustry.com, February 1, 2012
The ADP National Employment Report released today showed U.S. private sector employment increased by 170,000 jobs in January on a seasonally adjusted basis for non-farm private employers.
“Over the last three months, the monthly gains in employment shown in The ADP National Employment Report have averaged 223,000, compared to 163,000 per month over all of 2011,” said Carlos Rodriguez, president and CEO of ADP, in a statement. “This is a positive development that we hope will continue throughout the course of 2012.”
The biggest change in employment was in the small business sector, or employers with 1-49 employees, which added 95,000 jobs during the month of January. Businesses with a payroll of 50-499 employees added 72,000 jobs in January, while those with a payroll larger than 499 employees reported adding only 3,000 jobs in the month.
The ADP National Employment Report, created by Automatic Data Processing Inc. in partnership with Macroeconomic Advisers LLC, is derived from actual payroll data and measures the change in total non-farm private employment each month. The matched sample used to develop the report was derived from ADP data, which averaged 344,000 clients representing 21 million U.S. employees in 2011.
Joel Prakken, chairman of Macroeconomic Advisers, said in a statement that the labor market conditions continue to improve at a moderate pace, consistent with improvements in the country’s GDP.
“Today’s report marks the twenty-fourth consecutive monthly gain in private employment as measured in the ADP National Employment Report,” Prakken said in a statement. “This pick-up is consistent with the recent acceleration of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product, which, in the fourth quarter, grew at 2.8 percent — the fastest pace since second quarter of 2010.”
Of the 170,000 jobs added in January, 152,000 were added in the service-providing sector, with only 18,000 added in goods-producing sector. The only business sector that experienced a decline in payroll were large businesses, with 499 or more on payroll, in the goods-producing sector.
CONSUMER CONFIDENCE DIPS IN JANUARY
Reprinted Courtesy Boating Industry, January 31, 2012
The latest figures from The Conference Board show that after two months of improvement, consumer confidence fell 3.7 points to 61.1 in January.
The index reached 64.8 in December after two consecutive months of improvement. The Present Situation and Expectations Indices both declined in January as well, falling 8.1 and 0.8 points, respectively.
“Consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions turned more downbeat and is back to November 2011 levels,” Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board consumer research center, said in a statement. “Regarding the short-term outlook, consumers are more upbeat about employment but less optimistic about business conditions and their income prospects. Recent increases in gasoline prices may have consumers feeling a little less confident this month.”
Consumers were less upbeat about the current conditions in January as well, with only 13.3 percent of those surveyed reporting business conditions were “good.” Those reporting that business conditions were “bad” rose to 38.7 percent.
Views on the labor market were also down, with 0.5 percent fewer people reporting that jobs were “plentiful” and those claiming jobs were “hard to get” increased 1.9 percent. Despite this, consumers were more optimistic about the future job market, with 2.2 percent more expecting more jobs in the coming months, while 0.7 percent fewer respondents believed that there would be fewer jobs in the coming months.
The monthly Consumer Confidence Index, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and analytics around what consumers buy and watch. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was Jan. 19.
MANUFACTURING INDEX UP IN JANUARY
Reprint Courtesy Trade Only Today, 2/2/2012
Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in January for the 30th consecutive month and the overall economy grew for the 32nd consecutive month, according to the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business.
“The PMI registered 54.1 percent, an increase of 1 percentage point from December's seasonally adjusted reading of 53.1 percent, indicating expansion in the manufacturing sector for the 30th consecutive month,” Bradley Holcomb, chair of the Institute for Supply Management Manufacturing Business Survey Committee, said in a statement.
“The New Orders Index increased 2.8 percentage points from December's seasonally adjusted reading, to 57.6 percent, reflecting the 33rd consecutive month of growth in new orders,” he added. “Prices of raw materials increased for the first time in the last four months. Manufacturing is starting out the year on a positive note with new orders, production and employment all growing in January.”
A PMI in excess of 42.6 percent, over a period of time, generally indicates an expansion of the overall economy.
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