Valentine’s Day disappoints after Star Wars surge

March 2, 2016

By Lindsay Dunsmuir

The Fed’s Beige Book, a compendium of anecdotes from business contacts across the U.S. central bank’s 12 regional districts, is not known for tickling detail.  But it seems one regional Fed district – Boston to be precise – is paving the way in bringing a bit of relatable life to the usually dour document. In January’s report it pointed out that a toy company in its district reported strong sales “largely driven by the new Star Wars movie.” This time, it seems that all that movie-related spending has left locals with little money to spend on love. “Sales of Valentine’s Day items usually spike a few days before the holiday, but this year sales were lackluster,” the Boston Fed reported. Next time around, will we find out that children were deprived of their chocolate Easter bunnies? It’s anyone’s guess, but it seems like the researchers in Boston are minded to let us know.

Canada’s central bank still dreaming of an export recovery

January 19, 2016

Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz looks on during a Canada-UK Chamber of Commerce event in central London March 26, 2015. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth   - RTR4V02N

The dramatic plunge in the Canadian dollar must surely be a test of optimism, and patience, for Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz.

U.S. manufacturing flashing warning signs

September 29, 2015

U.S. manufacturing may be in trouble. Nearly all key indicators measuring the health of manufacturers in the world’s largest economy have disappointed over the past year.

The new Godot: waiting for wage inflation

September 7, 2015

Actors Maertens and Stoetzner perform on stage at Vienna's BurgtheaterBoth of the two top central banks considering an interest rate rise from near-zero are hoping for a significant pickup in wage inflation and have been waiting a long time for it to turn up.

Tale of two ISMs: another reason for the Fed to pause?

September 1, 2015

Depending on which report you read from the same source, the U.S. economy is doing extremely well and also in danger of slowing sharply.

Breakout for U.S. services economy?

August 6, 2015

It’s not very often you come across a chart like this. Usually this kind of thing happens once every 10 years or so.

Is the dollar taking over the Fed’s job?

May 5, 2015

US trade

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While the surge in the greenback since July has turned up in all sorts of economic data, much of it not good, the big one may have just landed.

U.S. growth outlook snowed under yet again

April 29, 2015

SFor many years in a row, since a form of feeble recovery began from the worst financial crisis in more than 80 years, a similar pattern of déjà vu has set in for the U.S. economy.

U.S. May non-farm payrolls may be a calmer affair after April shock

June 4, 2014

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The May U.S. non-farm payroll report on Friday may be a much less volatile affair than last month, when shock news of 288,000 new jobs topped even the most optimistic views.

Most accurate U.S. growth forecasters say to brace for stronger data this week

April 30, 2014

Arrows shot by Olympic hopeful and member of the U.S. archery team Gibilaro are seen in the target in BranfordThe two forecasting teams that came closest to predicting the U.S. economy would nearly stall in the first quarter expect other key economic data due this week to be strong.