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News / Economic News

Cass Freight Index Report – October 2016

Source: Cass Information Systems, Inc. 

Consistent with what many in the industry have been calling a “more than normal fall surge” in volumes, the Cass Shipments Index was up on a YOY basis for the first time in 20 months. We have seen a wide range of results in the different modes: from continued volume growth in parcel and airfreight driven by e‐commerce, to a sequential improvement in truck tonnage, to less bad rail and barge volume overall. Although it is far too early to make a ‘change in trend’ call, data is beginning to suggest that the consumer is finally starting to spend a little and that the industrial economy’s rate of deceleration has eased. Simply put, the winter of the overall freight recession we have seen for over a year and a half in the U.S. may not be over, but it is showing signs of thawing.

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Manufacturing and Trade Inventories and Sales

U.S. Census Bureau

Sales. The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that the combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for September, adjusted for seasonal and trading-day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,314.6 billion, up 0.7 percent (±0.2%) from August 2016 and was up 0.8 percent (±0.4%) from September 2015.

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U.S. Economic Snapshot

“The U.S. LEI increased in September, reversing its August decline, which together with the pickup in the six-month growth rate suggests that the economy should continue expanding at a moderate pace through early 2017,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research at The Conference Board. “Housing permits, unemployment insurance claims, and the interest rate spread were the main components lifting the index in September. Overall, the strengths among the leading indicators are outweighing modest weaknesses in stock prices and the average workweek.”  The Conference Board

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The Employment Situation – October 2016

Bureau of Labor Statistics 

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 161,000 in October, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 4.9 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment continued to trend up in health care, professional and business services, and financial activities.

The unemployment rate, at 4.9 percent, and the number of unemployed persons, at 7.8 million, changed little in October. Both measures have shown little movement, on net, since August 2015.

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October 2016 Manufacturing ISM Report On Business

Institute for Supply Management

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in October, and the overall economy grew for the 89th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®.

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Manufacturing and Trade Inventories and Sales

U.S. Census Bureau 

Sales. The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that the combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for August, adjusted for seasonal and trading-day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,304.1 billion, up 0.2 percent (±0.2%)* from July 2016, but was virtually unchanged (±0.5%)* from August 2015.

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U.S. Economic Snapshot

“While the U.S. LEI declined in August, its trend still points to moderate economic growth in the months ahead,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research at The Conference Board. “Although strengths and weaknesses among the leading indicators are roughly balanced, positive contributions from the financial indicators were more than offset by weakening of nonfinancial indicators, such as leading indicators of labor markets, suggesting some risks to growth persist.” The Conference Board

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U.S. Unemployment Situation – September 2016

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 156,000 in September, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 5.0 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment gains occurred in professional and business services and in health care.

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September 2016 Manufacturing ISM Report on Business

Institute for Supply Management

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in September following one month of contraction in August, and the overall economy grew for the 88th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®.

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Details from The September 2016 Short-Term Energy Outlook

U.S. Energy Information Administration

Key details from the latest Short-Term Energy Outlook released from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Some of the highlights included the following:

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