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Fourth-Quarter 2017 Shows Uptick for Economy

The year 2017 ended on a positive note for the U.S. economy, with fourth-quarter results showing growth in consumer confidence and in the housing and manufacturing sectors.

The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), which is the only leading economic indicator included in this report, experienced double-digit growth above the fourth quarter in 2016. PMI shows the health of the manufacturing sector, and a reading above 50 means general growth. The quarter’s average of 58.7 reflects robust production and high demand for products.

Consumer confidence, which is measured by The Conference Board, was also strong for the quarter, exhibiting a 17.5 percent uptick above the same period in 2016. Average existing-home sales, new housing starts and home prices also went up year over year, but not as dramatically.


About Kate Klein

Kate Klein
Kate is profiles editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. She reports on news and industry events and writes about retailers' unique contributions to the independent home improvement sector. She graduated from Cedarville University in her home state of Ohio, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English and minored in creative writing. She loves being an aunt, teaching writing to kids, running, reading, farm living and, as Walt Whitman says, traveling the open road, “healthy, free, the world before me.”

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