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Economic Update, January 31, 2013

Lucas Deal January 31, 2013
  • New orders for manufactured durable goods increased 4.6 percent in December over November, according to advance Census Bureau estimates. Orders have now risen in seven of the last eight months.
  • The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index dropped by 8.1 percentage points in January after falling 4.8 points in December. The January index level of 58.6 is the lowest since November 2011. In October, the index was at its highest point since February 2008.
  • The national average retail diesel price increased 2.5 cents to $3.927 a gallon during the week ended Jan. 28. The average price is 7.7 cents higher than the same week last year.
  • U.S. freight railroads’ carloads were down 6.3 percent for the week ended Jan. 26 compared to the same week last year. Intermodal traffic was up 1.6 percent.
  • First-time claims for unemployment insurance jumped by 38,000 during the week ended Jan. 26 to a seasonally adjusted 368,000. The four-week moving average was 352,000, an increase of 250 from the previous week’s average.

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