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Economic & Financial Highlights


Economic & Financial Highlights tracks data from a number of series. Below are the last seven days’ worth of charts, from newest to oldest, and analysis to provide context for the data. The “Search Charts” box at right allows you to search historical charts using various criteria.

Sticky Consumer Price Index (CPI)

Filed under: Inflation
Published on: September 18, 2014

The Atlanta Fed's sticky-price consumer price index (CPI), a measure of price change for the components of the CPI that are relatively slow to change, rose just 0.4 percent (one-month annualized) in August, its smallest gain since November 2009. The 12-month change in the index was 2.0 percent in August, down from 2.1 percent in July.

Sticky Consumer Price Index (CPI), percent change over given period

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Consumer Price Index (CPI)

Filed under: Inflation
Published on: September 18, 2014

Headline consumer prices were up 1.7 percent year over year in August, down from July’s 2.0 percent. The core measure, which excludes food and energy, was up 1.7 percent year over year in August, easing from 1.9 percent in July. The monthly annualized core reading increased 0.2 percent in August, the smallest one-month increase since January 2010 when it was down 1.8 percent. Though the subindexes for shelter, new vehicles, and alcoholic beverages rose, these advances were offset by declines in several subindexes, including airline fares, recreation, household furnishings and operations, apparel, and used cars and trucks.

Consumer Price Index (CPI), year-over-year percent change

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Retail Sales

Filed under: Consumption
Published on: September 17, 2014

Total retail sales increased significantly in August, rising 0.6 percent from an upwardly revised 0.3 percent in July. Year over year, total retail sales rose 5.0 percent, which is the strongest growth since July 2013. Core retail sales for July—excluding auto, gas, and building materials—were revised up from 0.1 percent to 0.4 percent and remained flat in August.

Retail Sales
 (year-over-year percent change, seasonally adjusted)

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Industrial Production

Filed under: Manufacturing
Published on: September 17, 2014

Industrial production (IP) fell 0.1 percent from July to August, its first monthly decline since January. July IP was also revised down, from a 0.4 percent increase to a 0.2 percent increase. Manufacturing production declined 0.4 percent in August from the previous month, driven in large part by a 7.6 percent drop in the production of motor vehicles and parts, which had increased 9.3 percent in July. Excluding motor vehicles and parts, which can be volatile during the summer months as a result of auto plant shutdowns, manufacturing output edged up 0.1 percent in August. Mining production rose 0.5 percent in August compared with July, and utilities rose 1.0 percent. Total IP grew at a 4.1 percent annualized rate in August, marking the fourth consecutive month the annual rate of growth has been above 4.0 percent.

Industrial Production, year-over-year percent change

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Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims

Filed under: Employment
Published on: September 12, 2014

In the week ending September 6, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance increased to 315,000 from an upwardly revised 304,000 the week prior. The four-week moving average, a less volatile gauge of underlying labor market conditions, increased slightly to 304,000 from the previous week's upward revised average of just over 303,000. Although the average increased, it's still at prerecession levels and consistent with gradually improving labor market conditions. Additionally, the period included the Labor Day holiday, and weekly claims can be volatile around holidays.

Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims (four-week moving average, seasonally adjusted, thousands)

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Broad Trade-Weighted Exchange Value of the U.S. Dollar

Filed under: International
Published on: September 12, 2014

The monthly average of the nominal trade-weighted exchange value of the dollar increased 0.9 percent in August compared with the previous month.

Currencies of most major trading partners depreciated again the dollar. The British pound fell a sizeable 2.1 percent, pulled down by an increasingly uncertain outcome of the upcoming referendum in Scotland. The euro dropped 1.6 percent, as economic data for the euro area came in weaker than expected and the European Central Bank took steps to ease monetary policy. The dollar also strengthened again the yen and the Canadian dollar and was slightly higher against the basket of currencies of major developing countries. On a trade-weighted basis, the dollar was up 1.1 percent compared with August 2013.

Broad Trade-Weighted Exchange Value of the U.S. Dollar (nominal, monthly, January 1997=100 
)

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Light Vehicle Sales

Filed under: Consumption
Published on: September 12, 2014

Light vehicle sales surged to 17.4 million units (the seasonally adjusted annualized rate) in August from 16.4 million units in July. This pace is its strongest one since before the recession in early 2006. Month over month, domestic light vehicles grew 7.2 percent, and imported vehicles grew 3.5 percent.

Light Vehicle Sales (millions of units, monthly, SAAR)

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Please note that only charts after January 1, 2013, are searchable, but you can view archived charts from 1999 through 2012.

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