Press Release ● Jobs and Economy
For Immediate Release: 
October 25, 2019
Contact Info: 
Mariel Saez 202-225-3130
The Majority Leader’s Office is now sending a weekly e-mail highlighting economic statistics and news that Members can use as they discuss the state of the economy and how House Democrats are working to spur economic growth, support job creation, and raise wages for the people.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: A warning from the father of the inverted yield curve, Campbell Harvey: “…The curve first inverted briefly in March then turned lower again in May where it has stayed since…Harvey said the curve needs to stay inverted for three months to be reliable, so in this instance the duration means the indicator is ‘flashing code red’ for a recession. ‘It’s not normal. It’s something that foreshadows bad times,’ he said.” [CNBC, 10/08/19]

STAT OF THE WEEK: Our deficit has swelled 26 percent over the last fiscal year, in part thanks to the GOP tax scam: "The gap between spending and revenue, referred to as the deficit, grew to $984 billion in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, the highest dollar amount since 2012, according to the Treasury Department. The government spent $4.4 trillion on numerous programs and services and brought in $3.5 trillion through taxes and other revenue." [Washington Post, 10/25/19]

ECONOMIC NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED
  • Avoiding a recession is dependent on the will of consumers: “If the U.S. economy manages to sustain its record-breaking expansion into 2020, it will be because U.S. consumers didn’t lose their nerve despite all the talk of recession. Consumer spending makes up almost 70% of the U.S. economy—a higher percentage than almost every other country… The unemployment rate, at 3.5%, is the lowest since 1969. And while job creation has slowed this year to an average of 161,000 a month, from 223,000 in 2018, it’s still running above the rate of expansion in the working-age population. Some employers are finding it difficult to fill open positions, which now top 7 million. The upshot is that workers have more leverage: The number who are quitting for better-paying jobs is at near-record levels, a trend that’s helping boost wages.” [Bloomberg, 10/24/19]
  • Financial satisfaction is falling. “A long-running index shows that financial happiness in the U.S. is slipping, despite continued economic strength. The American Institute of CPA’s quarterly Personal Financial Satisfaction Index, released Thursday, shows a 3.6% decline from the previous reading — which also had posted a slight dip. At the same time, however, the latest reading of 37.3 remains near the all-time high of 38.8 that was reached in the first three months of 2019...” [CNBC, 10/24/19]
  • The pervasive impacts of the trade war are now inflicting the electronics sector. “U.S. electronics factories are investing less and slowing hiring or laying off workers in some cases due to the rising costs of trade tariffs, according to an industry survey set for release on Wednesday… The electronics industry has increasingly sourced raw materials, components and manufacturing equipment from Chinese factories… one in five companies with U.S. operations said they were investing less in the United States due to the new tariffs. About 13% said they were cutting hiring or reducing headcount.” [Reuters, 10/23/19]
  • The Dow is on track to reach a historic high. However, “confidence is hard to come by when wealthy investors are asked about the future direction for the market. The percentage of the affluent investors who expect a stock market decline to be booked in the fourth quarter has doubled, according to a survey conducted by E-Trade Financial this month.” [CNBC, 10/21/19]
  • Housing numbers remain strong but the most recent housing starts decreased. “Starts fell 9.4 percent, down from an annualized 1,386,000 units in August to 1,256,000 units in September. Despite pulling back sharply from the best reading since June 2007, the single-family data continued to be encouraging. Single-family starts inched up from 915,000 units to 918,000 units, the strongest pace since January." [United States Department of Commerce, 10/21/19]