Apostrophe Abuse Hall of Shame: It's vs. Its
Professor Mark J. Perry's Blog for Economics and Finance
The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.9 percent in October to 117.4, following increases of 0.1 percent in September and 0.3 percent in August (see chart above).
Of the world's top 12 busiest container seaports in 2010, 7 are in China and 10 of the top 12 are in Asia.
The number of loaded export containers leaving the Los Angeles Port for overseas destinations reached a record high in October of 193,547 TEUs (20-foot equivalent units), beating the previous record of 192,850 TEUs in March of this year (see chart above). October exports this year are 28.14% ahead of the same month last year, and above the previous month by 9.4%. Loaded import containers in October were 5.5% above the year earlier level, but fell from September by 1%.
The USDA recently updated its international macroeconomic data set with world and country GDP data estimates for 2011. Here are some observations:
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According to the USDA, net income from U.S. farms is expected to set a new record this year of $103.6 billion on record cash receipts of $370.4 billion. The record farm income this year is 31% above last year's income, and marks the first time in history that the combined income of U.S. farms has exceeded $100 billion.
"After a sharp dip in September, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) climbed nearly three points in October (see chart above). As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the October ABI score was 49.4, following a score of 46.9 in September. This score reflects an overall decrease in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 57.3, up from a reading of 54.3 the previous month."
Interesting factoid from Table A above (click to enlarge) in today's CPI report:
Following up on a CD post yesterday about companies leaving California in record numbers, the chart above shows the difference in employment levels between California and Texas. While Texas employment was stable through the recession and is now 242,000 jobs above the December 2007 level, California lost jobs for 23 consecutive months starting in February 2008 and the September employment level is more than one million jobs below December 2007. In every month since September 2009, the employment level in California has been below 16 million, which is back to the employment level of 2000, more than a decade ago. In contrast, Texas employment is about 14% above the 2000 level.
I have featured charts similar to the one above that displays real GDP and civilian employment over the last ten years. More than any single chart, I think this one really helps to accurately describe the current state of the U.S. economy: