02222018Thu
Last updateThu, 22 Feb 2018 2pm

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Consumer Confidence Plunges to Lowest on Record

Layoffs, plunging home prices and tumbling investments have pushed consumer pessimism to record levels in October, a private research group said Tuesday. Wall Street shook it off, though, focusing instead on higher global markets amid optimism the Federal Reserve will ease interest rates further.

Source: Reuters

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Engler Poses Transatlantic Free Trade Agreement

National Association of Manufacturers President John Engler called for in-depth study of a “Transatlantic Free Trade Area” between either the European Union and the United States or the EU and the North American Free Trade Agreement nations.

In an address to Voka, the Flanders Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Engler said that despite the rise of China, India and other emerging economies, the U.S. and EU together account for 56 percent of Gross World Product.

Source: NAM

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Index of Leading Indicators Improves for First the Time in Five Months

The composite index of leading indicators increased 0.3% in September, to 100.6, the first increase in five months, according to preliminary estimates by the Conference Board.

But the leading index for August was revised sharply lower to show a drop of 0.9%, instead of the 0.5% first reported. Over the six months ended in September, the index has fallen 1.3%.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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Group Blames Trade Deals for Lost Jobs

The United States must fix its trade problems, particularly unfair trade with China, which has cost the nation more than 3.5 million manufacturing jobs this decade including more than 200,000 factory jobs in Pennsylvania, a panel of labor and manufacturing leaders said Monday in Greensburg, PA.

The meeting, sponsored by the Alliance for American Manufacturing, highlights the need for a manufacturing policy like the nation's competitors', and a trade policy that is enforced, said Scott Paul, executive director of the alliance.

Source: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

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U.S. Wholesale Prices Drop 0.4%

Amid sliding oil prices U.S. wholesale prices fell 0.4% in September, but core inflation -- excluding food and energy -- rose 0.4%, Labor Department data showed on Oct. 15.

The producer price index (PPI) showed its second consecutive monthly decline since the start of the year, after a 0.9% drop in August.

Source: Industry Week

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