Pollack: Hurricane likely to slow, not stop, expansion


& Company


September 11th, 2017

The Monday Morning Quarterback

A quick analysis of important economic data released over the last week

To put things in perspective, the extent of the tragedy caused by Mother Nature over the past few days and weeks is far more noteworthy than any of the economic data that I will comment on.  What is written today is literally inconsequential in relative terms.  Our hearts continue to go out to those who were in the path of hurricanes.

Overall, the full effect on the economy will not be known for some time.  It is likely to slow, but not stop, the expansion in the U.S. In any case, the individual tragedies will be significant.

U.S. Snapshot:

  • Consumer credit rose at a 5.9% annual rate in July and now stands 5.9% above a year ago. Revolving credit (mostly credit card debt) rose at a 3.2% annual rate and is up 5.5% over a year ago while non-revolving credit was up at a 6.9% annual rate and is 6.0% over a year ago.

  • Nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased 1.5% during the second quarter of 2017. Output grew by 4.0% and hours worked increased 2.5%.  Over the last year, productivity us up 1.3%.

  • Manufacturers’ new orders were down 3.3% in July but still stand 4.9% above a year ago.  The new orders inventories to shipments ratio stood at 1.37 compared to 1.38 in June and 1.41 a year ago.

  • The ISM non-manufacturing index stood at 55.3 in August compared to 53.9 in July and 51.7 a year ago.  Any reading of 50 or above suggests that the non-manufacturing sector is expanding.

Arizona Snapshot:

  • According to the Cromford Report, active listings in the Greater Phoenix MLS continue to decline. They stood at 21,657 in August compared to 22,324 in July and 23,962 a year ago.  The number of resales in August was 8,206 compared to 8,020 in July and 8,003 a year ago.

  • The median price of a new home in Greater Phoenix as a percent of the median price of a resale home continues to decline.  The ratio stood at 133.7% down from 135.1% last month compared to 139.8% a year ago.  It is still high by pre-2008 standards but continues to move in the right direction.

About EDPCo

Elliott D. Pollack & Company (EDPCo) offers a broad range of economic and real estate consulting services backed by one of the most comprehensive databases found in the nation. This information makes it possible for the firm to conduct economic forecasting, develop economic impact studies and prepare demographic analyses and forecasts. Econometric modeling and economic development analysis and planning are also part of our capabilities. EDPCo staff includes professionals with backgrounds in economics, urban planning, financial analysis, real estate development and government. These professionals serve a broad client base of both public and private sector entities that range from school districts and utility companies to law firms and real estate developers.

For more information, contact –

Elliott D. Pollack & company
7505 East Sixth Avenue, Suite 100
Scottsdale, Arizona 85251

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September 2017