U.S. UNEMPLOYMENT DOWN TO 3.8%
U.S. BLS - Total nonfarm payroll employment changed little in February (+20,000), and the unemployment rate declined to 3.8 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment in professional and business services, health care, and wholesale trade continued to trend up, while construction employment decreased.
Household Survey Data
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U.S. BEA - Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to the "initial" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 3.4 percent.
U.S. FRB - Industrial production decreased 0.6 percent in January after rising 0.1 percent in December.
U.S. BEA - The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis announced that the goods and services deficit was $49.3 billion in November, down $6.4 billion from $55.7 billion in October, revised.
IMF - Global debt has reached an all-time high of $184 trillion in nominal terms, the equivalent of 225 percent of GDP in 2017. On average, the world’s debt now exceeds $86,000 in per capita terms, which is more than 2½ times the average income per-capita.
U.S. BLS - Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 304,000 in January, and the unemployment rate edged up to 4.0 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. Job gains occurred in several industries, including leisure and hospitality, construction, health care, and transportation and warehousing.
U.S. FRB - Consistent with its statutory mandate, the Committee seeks to foster maximum employment and price stability. In support of these goals, the Committee decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 2-1/4 to 2-1/2 percent.