Week of April 8, 2019

Economic snapshot

December 2017 and December 2018 indicators versus the 30-year average

December 2017 and December 2018 indicators versus the 30-year average
Economic indicator 30-year minimum month-over-month change 30-year maximum month-over-month change 12/2017 month-over-month change 12/2018 month-over-month change
Employment growth -0.60% 0.41% 0.12% 0.15%
Consumer spending growth -1.40% 2.79% 0.26% -0.54%
Inflation -5375.57% 1254.00% -3.58% -11.37%

Benchmark interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve Board last year may have helped to decrease the rate of inflation as it fell below the 30-year month-over-month average in December 2018.1 Employment growth was also higher than the average.

However, labor force gains did not improve consumer spending. This may be due to a rise in short-term interest rates, waning consumer confidence or growth in low-income jobs. Declining consumer spending may hamper housing demand. The Federal Reserve has indicated that it may wait until the summer to decide on future rate hikes.

1Source data: Bureau of Labor Statistics/Bureau of Economic Analysis/Federal Reserve

Data date: 3/06/2019


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