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September 2018 Insight: Market Indicators

The U.S. economy added 201,000 jobs in August. This is slightly above analysts’ expectations. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate remained at 3.9%.

Real U.S. gross domestic product grew at an annualized rate of 4.2% last quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported August 29. That is up from 4.1% in its first estimate. Economists expect growth to slow in the coming months, to round out the year at about 3%.

The Architectural Billings Index for July registered at 50.7. While any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings, July’s growth was nearly flat.

The August Purchasing Managers Index registered at 61.3%, an increase of 3.2 percentage points from the July reading of 58.1%. The New Orders Index registered 65.1%, an increase of 4.9 percentage points from the July reading. The Production Index registered 63.3%, a 4.8-percentage point increase compared to the previous month.

President Donald Trump’s proposed tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods could go into effect as soon as a public comment period on the taxes concludes this month. It’s unclear whether the new tariffs will be set at 10% or 25%. It could be the most painful round of tariffs the U.S. has imposed on Chinese products this year.

The U.S. and Mexico reached an agreement on overhauling NAFTA in late August, turning up the pressure on Canada to agree to new terms. September 5 was the first day that negotiations between the U.S. and Canada resumed after four intensive days of talks ended without a deal on August 31.

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

ONI Insight September 2018