August 17, 2004
AND ANOTHER PONY, AND ANOTHER PONY, AND ANOTHER PONY...
Weekly wages rise 0.7 percent in July (UPI, 8/17/04)
Average weekly earnings in real terms increased by 0.7 percent in July from the previous month for U.S. workers, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Tuesday.
U.S. July Industrial Production Rises 0.4%; Plant-Use at 77.1% (Bloomberg, 8/17/04)
U.S. industrial production strengthened for the third time in four months in July led by business equipment such as computers and semiconductors, a sign the economy accelerated after a second-quarter slowdown.
The 0.4 percent increase in production at the nation's factories, mines and utilities followed June's revised 0.5 percent drop, the Federal Reserve said in Washington. The proportion of industrial capacity in use rose to 77.1 percent from 76.9 percent.
Companies' capital investments added more to growth in the second quarter than spending by consumers, the first time that balance has shifted since the first quarter of 1995. That business demand continued into July, helping the economy overcome slower consumer spending, economists said.
``The underlying momentum leaves the economy in good shape to weather any further increases in energy costs,'' said Maury Harris, chief economist at UBS Securities LLC in Stamford, Connecticut, before the report.
Housing starts snap back in July (CNN, 8/17/04)
U.S. housing starts rebounded sharply in July, making up almost all ground lost in a June slump by posting their largest monthly percentage gain since September 2002, a Commerce Department report showed Tuesday.Posted by Orrin Judd at August 17, 2004 8:54 PM
Starts rose a healthy 8.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.978 million units in July, above Wall Street's expectations. June starts were revised slightly higher to a 1.826 million annual rate from the initially reported 1.802 million pace.
Analysts had been expecting starts to pick up again in July but at a slower clip, to 1.9 million units.