Wednesday, 1 August 2012

US consumer spending flat amid mixed global economic data

Global economic data on Tuesday were mixed.

In the US, consumer spending was unchanged in June but income rose 0.5 percent.

Further good news on the consumer spending front came from the Conference Board, whose consumer confidence index increased to 65.9 this month from 62.7 in June.

Meanwhile, housing appears to be turning with the S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values decreasing 0.7 percent in May from a year earlier compared to a 1.8 percent decline in April.

And the Institute for Supply Management-Chicago's business barometer increased to 53.7 in July from 52.9 in June.

Elsewhere in the world, though, economic reports were less positive.

In Japan, household spending rose 1.6 percent in June, well down from 4.0 percent in May.

The Nomura/JMMA manufacturing PMI fell to 47.9 in July from 49.9 in June.

However, Japan's unemployment rate did fall to 4.3 percent in June from 4.4 percent in July.

In contrast, the eurozone unemployment rate was unchanged at a record high of 11.2 percent in June.

Meanwhile, the eurozone inflation rate remained at 2.4 percent in July, the same as in the previous two months.

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