US Initial Jobless Claims Rise
In a large volume data release various US agencies have taken the opportunity to update the markets on a range of Employment, Income and Expenditure statistics.
On the employment front, Initial Jobless Claims for the week have come in at 344k, up from the previous week’s 329k and higher than the market’s anticipated 319k. Continuing Jobless Claims have also risen, this week’s print is 2.771M, up from the 2.68M announced last week and also higher than the consensus estimate of 2.708M.
Personal Incomes for the month March are calculated to have risen by 0.5%, this follows last month’s increase of 0.3% and hits the 0.5% consensus prediction.
The rise in Personal Incomes was matched by an increase in the Personal Spending number, this expanded by 0.9% on the month after rising 0.3% the previous month, 0.6% was the anticipated increase.
The Personal Spending figure from the Department of Commerce normally tallies closely to the more in depth Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE) data from the US Bureau of Economic Analysis.
This month’s PCE data confirms a rise in the consumer economic activity. The month on month number has come in at 0.2%, up on the previous reading of 0.1%, while the year on year number shows a rise of 1.1%, this is ahead of the February reading of 0.9%.
The more stable ex food and energy version of the PCE data also continues to track higher. March’s Core PCE has just been reported at 0.2% month on month, slightly up on the February reading of 0.1%, while the year on year reading came in at 1.2%, also higher than the previous months 1.1% expansion in consumer spending activity on non essentials.
While increases in income and spending provide a very welcome sign of activity in the recovering US economy, they also come with an inflationary warning. Given the recent focus on US price rises the Fed will be paying particularly close attention to today’s data.
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