9/13: MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY

CPI rose 0.1 percent in August and 1.7 percent year-on-year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.1 percent in August after rising 0.3 percent in July. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 1.7 percent.  Increases in the indexes for shelter and medical care were the major factors in all items monthly increase, outweighing a decline in the energy index. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 percent in August, the same increase as in June and July. The index for all items less food and energy rose 2.4 percent over the last 12 months, its largest 12-month increase since July 2018.



August Small Business Optimism Index slipped 1.6 points to 103.1

The August NFIB Small Business Optimism Index fell 1.6 points to 103.1, remaining within the top 15 percent of readings. However, optimism slipped because fewer owners said they expect better business conditions and real sales volumes in the coming months. Job creation accelerated, positive earnings trends improved, and quarter-on-quarter sales gains remained strong.



Job openings fell 0.4 percent in July, hires and separations rose over 4.0 percent

The number of job openings fell 0.4 percent to 7.22 million on the last business day of July. However, hires rose 4.1 percent, separations rose 4.5 percent, and quits rose 3.8 percent.  During July, the number of unemployed persons was also 6.06 million, meaning that there were 1.15 million more job openings than people to fill them.