US Economy Remains Consistently OKby Tim Manni
US Industrial Production rose by a better-than-expected 0.2% in July, a mellow reading, yet still higher than recessionary numbers. Manufacturing gained 0.4% for the July, the best reading observed in 10 months. Strong showings in automobile production and mining canceled out a 1.9% drop in utilities. Motor vehicle output increased 3.6% for the month, recovering strongly from dismal numbers in the last couple of readings. Eliminating motor vehicle output, manufacturing rose just 0.1%, consistent with the year’s meager, yet positive readings.
The dollar is rising across the board, gaining strength as foreign economies begin to struggle. The dollar has risen 5% against the Euro in August alone, and rose against the yen this morning. If oil prices continue to fall, the dollar should strengthen even more.
Another improvement was seen in the University of Michigan Survey of Consumer Sentiment which reported a positive reading of 61.7 in early August, up 0.5 from late July, as lower gas prices have and will continue to improve consumer moods.