Economic Data for Thanksgiving Week

Andrew Klips  |

The bulls were running rampant on Wall Street to wrap last week and will be looking to carry some of that momentum into a week that will be shortened by the Thanksgiving Holiday.  The markets will be closed on Thursday and will only be open until 1 PM ET on Friday in observance of turkey day.  The week in economic data will not only be a bit odd because of the Labor Department’s weekly report on initial jobless claims being moved from its normal Thursday release to Wednesday, but also because two delayed reports on housing starts will only come with limited information.  The reports for September and October had been delayed already because of a lapse in federal funding, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. 


In its latest comments on the situation, the government agency said, “The Census Bureau's monthly New Residential Construction indicator includes statistics on building permits, housing starts and housing completions. On November 26 at 8:30 a.m., the Census Bureau will release estimates of housing units authorized by building permits in September and October. However, the release of new housing unit starts and housing unit completions will now be released on December 18, 2013.” and “As a result, the December 18 release will include data on housing units started and completed in September, October and November 2013.”


So, investors will get a bit more information on the housing markets on Tuesday, but it will be lacking.  In some other housing reports that merit extra attention, but aren’t necessarily considered “market moving,” the National Association of Realtors will release its report on pending home sales Monday morning and the S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index will arrive on Tuesday.


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The Dallas Federal Reserve will release its survey on regional manufacturing activity on Monday as well.


Reports that are typically considered “market moving” will come on Wednesday with Durable Goods Orders from the Commerce Department and Initial Jobless Claims from the Labor Department.  Here’s a look at those two key reports:


Durable Goods Orders for October – The Commerce Department said that new orders for durable goods, items ranging from toasters to fighter planes meant to last more than three years, rose 3.7 percent in September to $233.4 billion, following a revised 0.2 percent increase in August.  Boeing (BA) drove a huge portion of the gains, collecting orders for 127 new planes during the month.  Excluding the volatile transportation segment, new orders dropped by 0.1 percent, missing expectations of a 0.5-percent gain. So-called “core” capital goods, non-military capital goods other than aircraft, declined 1.1 percent in September, representing the second decline in three months.  For October, economists are expecting new orders for durable goods to contract by 2.0 percent and new orders excluding transportation to improve by 0.4 percent.


Initial Jobless Claims for the Week Ended November 23 – Last week, the Labor Department said that initial jobless claims fell by 21,000 to 323,000 in the week prior, easily beating expectations.  The four-week moving average lowered by 6,750 to 338,500 as the data begins to normalize from inflated levels recently caused by computer glitches as California updated its system and the 16-day partial government shutdown in October.  The week prior was a shortened week for government agencies because of Veterans Day, which could lead to some decent revisions to the week’s figures.  For the latest week, economists are forecasting claims to rise back up to 330,000.

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