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Leading Economic Indicators

BUSINESS
September 29, 2007 | From the Associated Press
Consumers shrugged off sagging home prices and financial market turmoil in August to push up spending by a better-than-expected amount. In other upbeat news, a key inflation gauge showed that price pressures outside of food and energy eased further last month and construction activity rose, thanks to continued strength outside of housing.
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BUSINESS
September 21, 2007 | From the Associated Press
Strained by a tight credit market, the nation's economy should stumble along at a slower pace in coming months, but it may find help from lower interest rates and possible employment gains. The Conference Board said Thursday that its index of leading economic indicators dropped 0.6% in August, slightly more than the 0.5% decrease analysts were expecting. The decline follows a revised 0.7% rise in July.
BUSINESS
September 8, 2007 | Peter G. Gosselin, Times Staff Writer
The notion that the U.S. is flirting with recession grew more credible Friday as the government reported that the economy shed jobs last month for the first time in four years, indicating that damage from the sub-prime mortgage meltdown had spread. The news, which sent stock prices tumbling, came as two big mortgage lenders based in Southern California -- Countrywide Financial Corp. and IndyMac Bancorp Inc. -- said they planned to cut as many as 13,000 jobs.
BUSINESS
September 7, 2007 | Leslie Earnest, Times Staff Writer
The U.S. may be in the grips of a housing and credit market squeeze, but if your kid needs new jeans, he needs new jeans. So back-to-school shoppers helped propel retail sales to $55.2 billion last month, with clothing stores that target teenagers posting strong results, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers' tally of 47 major chains nationwide. Sales at stores open at least a year were 2.9% higher than in August 2006.
BUSINESS
September 5, 2007 | From the Associated Press
A slowdown in manufacturing and construction means the economy needs to rely even more on exports to sustain growth. Turmoil in the housing and financial markets appears to be spilling over to the broader economy, according to data released Tuesday that showed expansion in the manufacturing sector slowed in August and construction spending dropped sharply in July. Although exports remain a bright spot, analysts don't expect overseas sales to accelerate enough to prevent U.S.
BUSINESS
August 18, 2007 | From Reuters
new york -- U.S. consumer sentiment deteriorated in August, falling to its weakest point in a year, as more expensive oil, declining home prices and turmoil in the financial markets all hurt confidence. The Reuters/University of Michigan survey of consumer confidence said its preliminary reading for August was 83.3, well below a median forecast of 88 and a sharp fall from the previous month's final reading of 90.4.
BUSINESS
August 18, 2007 | Lisa Girion, Times Staff Writer
Thousands of carpenters, drywall installers and other people in the building trades were idled in July as the slumping real estate market put a sledgehammer to construction jobs in California, state figures released Friday showed. Overall, the state lost a net 8,600 jobs as unemployment crept up to 5.3% Construction employment shrank by 7,800 jobs as home developers curtailed projects amid weak demand and emerging signs of a credit crunch.
BUSINESS
August 13, 2007 | From the Associated Press
new york -- Amid the wildest stock market in years, the Federal Reserve has maintained that inflation is its biggest worry. Wall Street will try to decide whether that's a legitimate stance when this week's data on rising prices come in. Meanwhile, Asian markets rebounded Monday in early trading, recovering gradually from last week's worldwide plunge set off by volatility from a U.S. mortgage crisis.
BUSINESS
August 4, 2007 | Walter Hamilton and Peter G. Gosselin, Times Staff Writers
Stock prices tumbled Friday as anemic U.S. job growth last month -- weakened by the housing slump -- and an unusually negative market assessment from a major Wall Street firm inflamed fears of substantial economic pain. After a turbulent, up-and-down week, the stock market seemed to decide that it preferred down, in a big way. The Dow Jones industrials sank almost 300 points, more than 2%. The stage was set for a market tumble by news that U.S.
BUSINESS
July 21, 2007 | Lisa Girion, Times Staff Writer
Dragged down by the real estate slump, California's employment engine ground to a near standstill in June with a net gain of 400 positions, state figures released Friday showed. By comparison, the state added 16,200 jobs in May and 4,800 in April. As expected, financial activities and construction were the biggest losers among six sectors that posted employment declines in June, according to the state Employment Development Department report.
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