Following seven years of growth in new-vehicle sales, U.S. consumers appear to be tapping the brakes—but the auto industry says the slowdown is not causing them concern.
The chief investment strategist for Fifth Third Bank says the economy is in the seventh inning of its recovery, which is "good news." But headwinds in the labor market could be limiting the potential for growth.
The U.S. economy rebounded sharply in the spring, growing at the fastest pace in more than two years amid brisk consumer spending on autos and other goods.
Economists surveyed by the National Association for Business Economics are generally optimistic about the U.S. economy, with most expecting stronger growth than last year's poor performance.
The median estimate from economists surveyed by the National Association for Business Economics calls for the American economy to grow 2.2 percent in 2017.
The vote in favor of a “Brexit” has shocked investors and sent stock markets plummeting around the world. Years of financial uncertainty lay ahead on a global scale as the U.K. and EU find their footing.
The momentum appears to favor those who wish to remain in the European Union. The betting market Betfair said the probability that the country will stay stands at 86 percent. Optimism in financial markets also points in that direction.
Employers raised pay, more people felt confident enough to look for work, and the unemployment rate dipped to 4.9 percent, its lowest level since 2008.
Much of the weakness last quarter reflected a slowdown in consumer spending, which grew at an annual rate of just 2.2 percent, compared with a 3 percent rate in the previous quarter.
The U.S. economy grew at a slightly faster rate in the summer than previously reported, mainly because businesses restocked their goods at a stronger pace than first thought.
U.S. hiring showed a strong downturn in September, and job gains for July and August were lower than previously thought, a sour note for a labor market that had been steadily improving.
Employers added 215,000 jobs in July and the unemployment rate held at a seven-year low of 5.3 percent, possible signs of further progress in the U.S. labor market that’s keeping the Federal Reserve on the path toward raising interest rates as soon as next month.
The rate fell mostly because many people out of work gave up on their job searches and were no longer counted as unemployed. Average hourly pay was flat.
The trend indicates that employers are confident enough in future consumer demand to retain their staffs. The number of people receiving benefits fell 50,000 to 2.22 million.
The U.S. economy skidded to a near halt in the first three months of the year, battered by a triple whammy of harsh weather, plunging exports and sharp cutbacks in oil and gas drilling.