MARKET CONDITIONS - (Updated 08/16/08)
2nd quarter GDP came
in higher than 1st estimates at 1.9%.
The increase in real GDP in the second quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from
exports, personal consumption expenditures (PCE), nonresidential structures, federal government spending, and state and local government spending that were partly offset by negative contributions from
private inventory investment, residential fixed investment, and equipment and software. Imports, which
are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, decreased.
The unemployment rate rose to 5.7 percent, and nonfarm payroll employment continued to trend downin July (-51,000),
the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. Employment continued to fall in construction,
manufacturing, and several service-providing industries, while health care and mining continued to add jobs. Average hourly
earnings rose by 6 cents, or 0.3 percent, over the month.
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had declined in June, held steady in July. The Index now stands at
51.9 (1985=100), up slightly from 51.0 in June. The Present Situation Index was virtually unchanged at 65.3 versus 65.4 last
month. The Expectations Index increased moderately to 43.0 from 41.4 in June.