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In the News This Week

Job openings rose to a 13-year high in June, with US employers posting 4.67 million positions – the highest number of advertised openings since February 2001. While hiring rose to 4.83 million for the month, the hiring rate has not risen as quickly as job openings: the number of positions advertised has risen 17.6% over the past year, while hiring has risen 9.3% over the same period. Also on a positive note, small business optimism rose in July, with the NFIB optimism index rising to 95.7. Six of the index’s ten components increased, with a notable gain in the number of firms saying it is a good time to expand.

Manufacturing output rose 1% in July, with increases across all major categories. The gain was led by a 10.1% surge in auto production – the biggest increase since July 2009. The US budget deficit fell to $95 billion in July, as receipts for the month totaled $211 billion, while outlays amounted to $305 billion. The fiscal year-to-date deficit at the end of July stood at $460 billion – the lowest since 2008 for the same period.

On a downbeat note, retail sales stalled in July, posting the weakest month since January, dampened by a decline in sales at auto dealers.

In Europe, weak growth figures out of France and Germany sent the German 10-year bond yield below 1% for the first time on record.

The supply of credit in China expanded at the slowest pace in almost six years: credit grew by $44.3 billion in July – the slowest since October 2008.


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