Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Another Busy Day

by Calculated Risk on 1/11/2011 08:22:00 PM

The story remains the same - indicators are mixed, but mostly show gradual improvement - and ongoing problems in Europe and falling house prices ...

• NFIB: Small Business Optimism index declines slightly in December

Small Business Optimism Index Click on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

The first graph shows the small business optimism index since 1986. The index decreased slightly to 92.6 in December from 93.2 in November.

According to the NFIB: "This marks the 36th month of Index readings in the recession level". Here is the NFIB press release: NFIB Small Business Optimism Index Remains Weak

• Ceridian-UCLA: Diesel Fuel index increases in December

The Ceridian-UCLA Pulse of Commerce Index™ (PCI), a real-time measure of the flow of goods to U.S. factories, retailers and consumers, surged 2.4 percent in December and pushed the PCI above its previous 2010 peak established in May.
Here is the press release: Year-End Surge Reported in Latest Ceridian-UCLA PCI

• CoreLogic: House Prices declined 1.6% in November

CoreLogic House Price IndexThis graph shows the national CoreLogic HPI data since 1976. January 2000 = 100.

The index is down 5.07% over the last year, and off 30.9% from the peak.

The index is only 1.2% above the low set in March 2009, and I expect to see a new post-bubble low for this index - possibly as early as next month.

• AAR: Rail Traffic increases in December.

The AAR reports carload traffic in December 2010 was up 9.4% compared to December 2009, and traffic is also above December 2008. Intermodal traffic (using intermodal or shipping containers) is up 13.3% over December 2009 and up over December 2008.

• BLS: Job Openings steady in November, Labor Turnover still Low

• Europe Update: Portugal Bond Auction Wednesday