Industrial production +0.9% to 77.5
Housing starts -1.5%
Import prices +0.3%
The main reason for the increase in industrial production were the bounce back in auto production after a big slowdown from part shortages related to the Japanese disaster. Mining was up 1%.
Housing starts were down after two months of increase. Apparently, a lot of 20-somethings are living with their parents. If you can’t get good housing #s with mortgage rates at 4%, you know that will take a while to come back. I figure another couple years.
The CPI is due out later this week and will probably be up in line with the import prices reported today.
Stocks are down over 1%, following Europe’s lead. Europeans are seeing a big slowdown in their economies. Even mighty Germany grew only 0.1% last quarter, though that would have been higher if not for an early spring that pulled seasonal construction activity into the 1st quarter.
Country, GDP Growth, % of EU
Germany 0.1%, 20%
France 0.0%, 16%
UK 0.3%, 14%
Italy 0.2%, (est) 13%
Spain 0.2%, 9%