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July 2018 Insight: Market Indicators

The U.S. economy added 213,000 jobs in June despite the mounting trade tensions with China. The unemployment rate rose to 4.0%, from 3.8% the previous month.

Consumer sentiment in the U.S. rose slightly in June. The index increased to 98.2, below an expected 99.2 by economists surveyed by Thomson Reuters. The primary concerns for consumers were a down pace in economic growth and rising inflation.

The Architecture Billings Index for May was 52.8, which shows that demand for services from architectural firms continues to be healthy as any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings.

The June Purchasing Managers Index registered 60.2%, an increase of 1.5 percentage points from the May reading of 58.7%. The New Orders Index registered at 63.5%, a decrease of 0.2 percentage point from May’s reading. The Production Index registered at 62.3%, a 0.8 percentage point increase compared to May.

President Donald Trump fired the biggest shot yet in the global trade war by imposing tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports and China retaliated. Duties on Chinese goods started on July 6 in Washington, just after midday in China. Another $16 billion of goods could follow in two weeks, Trump earlier told reporters, before suggesting the final total could eventually reach $550 billion, a figure that exceeds all of U.S. goods imports from China in 2017.

U.S. customs officials will begin collecting an additional 25% tariff on a range of imports from China. China has said it would respond by imposing higher levies on an equivalent amount of goods from America, which may in turn prompt Trump to raise trade barriers even higher.

For more information, contact your local sales representative or view the July 2018 Insight Guide below.

ONI Insight July 2018