New workers hard to find, Empire State Manufacturing numbers fell, Big week for earnings from big companies

July 17, 2017

A recent report reveals that an increasing number of U.S. companies are finding it difficult to hire new workers, and some have even raised wages. The National Association of Business Economists (NABE) reports that “slightly over one-third of panelists reports that their firms have experienced some difficulty in hiring,” NABE survey chair Emily Kolinski said in a statement. The share of firms reporting increased wages rose 8% from April to 47%.

Economic data continues to stream in on the weak side with today’s lower-than-expected regional manufacturing numbers. The Empire State Manufacturing fell to 9.8 in July, below the 13.0 expected and down from 19.8 in June. The closely watched new orders and shipment indexes both declined. In addition, the labor market component saw just a small increase in employment and no change in hours worked. Indexes assessing the six-month outlook remained favorable, though firms were somewhat less optimistic about future conditions than in June.

It is a big week for earnings, which could dictate the direction of Stock and Bond prices as well as mortgage rates. Wall Street will see numbers from Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Microsoft, IBM J&J and Netflix. Analysts estimate that second-quarter earnings for the S&P 500 companies rose 8.1% from a year earlier. First-quarter earnings posted their best numbers since 2011, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Emerging market