Last Week in the News

The Institute for Supply Management reported the monthly index of manufacturing activity rose to 55.7 in October from 52.6 in September. It was the highest reading since April 2006 and well above the economic forecast of 53. A reading above 50 signals expansion.

The Commerce Department reported total construction spending rose 0.8% in September. Economists had expected a decrease of 0.2%. Private residential activity rose 3.9%, posting its best showing since July 2003.

The National Association of Realtors reported that its pending home sales index, a forward-looking indicator based on signed contracts, rose 6.1% to 110.1 in September, following a 6.4% increase in August. It was the eighth consecutive monthly increase and the highest reading since December 2006.

The Commerce Department reported factory orders rose 0.9% in September. The report reflected increased demand for both durable goods and non-durable goods. Bookings for heavy machinery jumped 7.9%, the largest gain since March 2008.

The U.S. non-manufacturing sector grew for a second consecutive month in October. The Institute for Supply Management reported the monthly index of non-manufacturing activity was 50.6 in October, slightly down from 50.9 in September. A reading above 50 signals expansion.

The Labor Department said that productivity jumped at an annual rate of 9.5% in the third quarter of 2009. The increase was the biggest quarterly gain since a 9.7% increase in the third quarter of 2003.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 20,000 to 512,000 in the week ending October 31. The figure was lower than the 523,000 that economists had forecast. Continuing claims for the week ending October 24 fell by 68,000 to 5.75 million.

Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on international trade and consumer sentiment on November 13.



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Anthony J Crecco

Short Sale and Loan Modification Expert

Thornwood NY  10594






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