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June 2018 Insight: Market Indicators

The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 3.8% as employers added 223,000 jobs in May – this is after two months of lackluster gains.

The consumer confidence index rose to 128 from a revised 125.6 in April, close to an 18-year high. The present situation index climbed to a 17-year high of 161.7 from 157.5 in the prior month. The high level of confidence reflects a sturdy economic expansion in the U.S.

April’s Architectural Billings Index registered at 52.0, which indicates an increase in firm billings from the previous month.

The May Purchasing Managers Index registered at 58.7%, an increase of 1.4 percentage points from the April reading of 57.3%. The New Orders Index registered at 63.7%, up 2.5 percentage points from April. The Production Index registered 61.5%, a 4.3 percentage point increase compared to April.

The Trump administration announced on May 31 that it would impose tariffs on metals imported from its closest allies, a measure that could provoke retaliation against American businesses. A 25% tariff on steel and a 10% tariff on aluminum from the European Union, Canada, and Mexico, which supply nearly half of America’s imported metal, went into effect on June 1.

The Trump administration had decided to move ahead with tough trade measures on China. On May 29, the White House said that it would proceed with its plan to levy 25% tariffs on $50 billion of imported Chinese goods, despite recent remarks by administration officials that the tariffs would be suspended while the countries continued their negotiations.

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

ONI Insight June 2018