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"Bringing the measurements of critical economic activities into the twenty-first century by
mining tracking data for an understanding of what American consumers were doing yesterday."


Daily Absolute Demand Index


 Daily Absolute Demand Index(1): 
 
Chart
(Click here for best resolution)
 
 Notes:
  (1) A projection of our basic year-over-year data into an aggregate absolute demand, reflecting the compounding impact of extended expansions or contractions. The daily data is normalized such that the year-long average for 2005 would be at 100 in the chart.


 





Monthly Absolute Demand Index


 Monthly Absolute Demand Index(3): 
 
Chart
(Click here for best resolution)
 
 Notes:
  (3) A projection of our basic year-over-year data into an aggregate absolute demand, reflecting the compounding impact of extended expansions or contractions. The data points represent month-long averages of the daily data, normalized so that the year-long average for 2005 would be at 100 in the chart.


 


Current Weighted Composite & Sector Index Values



Chart
(Click here for best resolution)


Last 10 Weighted Composite Index Values
Date:10/11/201710/12/201710/13/201710/14/201710/15/201710/16/201710/17/201710/18/201710/19/201710/20/2017
Value:96.6197.2197.8397.4497.2897.3798.0497.8297.9697.46


Current Values for Each of the Sector Indexes
Sector:AutomotiveEntertainmentFinancialHealthHouseholdHousingRecreationRetailTechnologyTravel
Value(3):92.8191.57102.9585.71106.39101.6097.3895.7693.73106.62

 Notes:
  (3) The 10 sectors contribute to our Weighted Composite Index according to weightings provided for their various sub-components by the United States Department of Commerce's National Income and Product Accounts ('NIPA') Tables (see our FAQs page for further explanations). In general, components in our Housing Sector have the highest weightings for durable goods in the NIPA matrix, while components in our Retail Sector contribute dynamically to many different line items in the weighting matrix, depending on specific goods involved.


 




Current Growth Index Values & Percentiles


Trailing 91, 183 and 365 Day Data
Trailing Days:91-Day183-Day365-Day
% Growth(4):-7.90%-7.99%-6.97%
Percentiles(5):0.32%0.04%0.01%

 Notes:
  (4) The average net year-over-year growth percentage of the Weighted Composite Index over the past 91, 183 and 365 Days (the daily value for the equivalent of a real-time Consumer 'GDP' for the trailing moving 'quarter', 'six months' and 'year').
  (5) The percentile of the above among all GDP quarters, six months and years since the spring of 1947 in the BEA's GDP growth tables (i.e., the percentage of all comparable time spans in the BEA's data below the values in the '% Growth' line above).


 

Commentary


     
  September 28, 2017 - BEA Revises 2nd Quarter 2017 GDP Growth Slightly Upward to 3.06%:

In their third and final estimate of the US GDP for the second quarter of 2017, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the US economy was growing at a +3.06% annual rate, up +0.02% from their previous estimate and up +1.82% from the prior quarter.

The changes from the previous estimate are little more than statistical noise. For example, consumer spending was revised downward -0.03% to a +2.24% annualized growth rate. The inventory contribution continued to be essentially neutral (+0.12), while the previous growth in commercial fixed investment moderated slightly (to +0.53%). Governmental spending remained in a very minor contraction (-0.03%), and the growth rates for both exports (+0.42%) and imports (-0.22%) were fine tuned modestly.

The BEA's "bottom line" (their "Real Final Sales of Domestic Product", which excludes inventories) was revised downward to +2.94%, still up +0.24% from the prior quarter.

Real annualized household disposable income was revised upward $7 to $39,299 (in 2009 dollars). The household savings rate was revised upward by +0.1% to 3.8% (down -0.1% from the prior quarter).

For this revision the BEA assumed an effective annualized deflator of 1.01%. During the same quarter (April 2017 through June 2017) the inflation recorded by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in their CPI-U index was a minuscule 0.06%. Over estimating inflation results in pessimistic growth rates, and if the BEA's "nominal" data was deflated using CPI-U inflation information the headline growth number would have been materially higher at a very healthy +4.04% annualized growth rate.

Among the notable items in the report :

-- The headline contribution from consumer expenditures for goods was reported to be +1.16% (up +1.01% from the prior quarter).

-- The contribution to the headline from consumer spending on services strengthened to +1.08% (although that remained down -0.09% from the prior quarter). The combined consumer contribution to the headline number was +2.24%, up +0.92% from 1Q-2017.

-- The headline contribution from commercial private fixed investments was revised downward to +0.53%, down a material -0.74% from the prior quarter. That continued to reflect a contraction in residential construction.

-- Inventory continued to be very nearly neutral (at +0.10%). This was a +1.58% improvement from the prior quarter. It is important to remember that the BEA's inventory numbers are exceptionally noisy (and susceptible to significant distortions/anomalies caused by commodity price or currency swings) while ultimately representing a zero reverting (and long term essentially zero sum) series.

-- Governmental spending was reported to be contracting very slightly, at a -0.03% rate. This was a +0.08% improvement from the prior quarter.

-- Exports contributed +0.42% to the headline number, down -0.43% from the prior quarter.

-- Imports deducted -0.22% from the headline, which was up +0.41% from the prior quarter. In aggregate, foreign trade added +0.20% to the headline number.

-- The "real final sales of domestic product" grew at an annualized 2.94%, up +0.24% from the prior quarter. This is the BEA's "bottom line" measurement of the economy and it excludes the inventory data.

-- As mentioned above, real per-capita annual disposable income was revised upward slightly (by $7 per annum). At the same time the household savings rate was reported to have increased +0.1% (although it is down -0.1% from the prior quarter). It is important to keep this line item in perspective: real per-capita annual disposable income is up only +7.15% in aggregate since the second quarter of 2008 -- a meager annualized +0.77% growth rate over the past 36 quarters.




The Numbers, as Revised

As a quick reminder, the classic definition of the GDP can be summarized with the following equation :

GDP = private consumption + gross private investment + government spending + (exports - imports)


or, as it is commonly expressed in algebraic shorthand :

GDP = C + I + G + (X-M)


In the new report the values for that equation (total dollars, percentage of the total GDP, and contribution to the final percentage growth number) are as follows :

GDP Components Table

Total GDP = C + I + G + (X-M)
Annual $ (trillions) $19.3 = $13.3 + $3.2 + $3.3 + $-0.6
% of GDP 100.00% = 69.13% + 16.51% + 17.31% + -2.95%
Contribution to GDP Growth % 3.06% = 2.24% + 0.65% + -0.03% + 0.20%


The quarter-to-quarter changes in the contributions that various components make to the overall GDP can be best understood from the table below, which breaks out the component contributions in more detail and over time. In the table below we have split the "C" component into goods and services, split the "I" component into fixed investment and inventories, separated exports from imports, added a line for the BEA's "Real Final Sales of Domestic Product" and listed the quarters in columns with the most current to the left :

Quarterly Changes in % Contributions to GDP

2Q-2017 1Q-2017 4Q-2016 3Q-2016 2Q-2016 1Q-2016 4Q-2015 3Q-2015 2Q-2015 1Q-2015 4Q-2014 3Q-2014 2Q-2014 1Q-2014
Total GDP Growth 3.06% 1.24% 1.76% 2.79% 2.25% 0.57% 0.48% 1.63% 2.74% 3.24% 2.01% 5.20% 4.61% -0.92%
Consumer Goods 1.16% 0.15% 1.03% 0.69% 1.30% 0.46% 0.63% 0.95% 0.99% 0.93% 1.26% 1.01% 1.38% 0.52%
Consumer Services 1.08% 1.17% 0.97% 1.23% 1.28% 0.77% 1.17% 0.90% 1.04% 1.56% 2.10% 1.64% 0.96% 0.74%
Fixed Investment 0.53% 1.27% 0.28% 0.25% 0.22% -0.05% -0.41% 0.55% 0.77% 0.67% 0.04% 1.45% 1.56% 0.76%
Inventories 0.12% -1.46% 1.06% 0.16% -0.67% -0.64% -0.68% -0.22% -0.63% 1.45% -0.26% 0.44% 0.91% -1.69%
Government -0.03% -0.11% 0.03% 0.09% -0.16% 0.32% 0.05% 0.21% 0.60% 0.27% -0.11% 0.39% 0.20% -0.11%
Exports 0.42% 0.85% -0.47% 0.74% 0.32% -0.33% -0.29% -0.51% 0.47% -0.59% 0.65% 0.09% 1.22% -0.35%
Imports -0.22% -0.63% -1.14% -0.37% -0.04% 0.04% 0.01% -0.25% -0.50% -1.05% -1.67% 0.18% -1.62% -0.79%
Real Final Sales 3.94% 2.70% 0.70% 2.63% 2.92% 1.21% 1.16% 1.85% 3.37% 1.79% 2.27% 4.76% 3.70% 0.77%





Summary and Commentary

There were no material revisions in this report -- merely statistical noise. The net result continues to show an economy in a state of healthy growth. The notable takeaways from this report are :

-- Consumer spending provided 2.24% to the headline number, more than two thirds of the total growth and 69% of the total GDP.

-- Commercial fixed investment was revised downward modestly to +0.53%, while there continued to be a contraction in residential construction.

-- Exports and Imports continue to provide a net positive (+0.20%) contribution to the headline number.

During the second quarter consumer spending was what might be considered "normal" for a healthy economy. Hopefully next month's preliminary reading for the third quarter continues that trend.
 
     
   
 Note: A more complete list of historical commentary can be found on our History Page ...
 
   


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