The economic news over the past month has been extremely positive, especially in the face of an economy that had appeared to be slowing recently. Initial estimates for first-quarter GDP growth was 3.2%, suggesting significantly faster growth than consensus estimates.
Job growth further suggest the economy isn’t slowing down just yet. The economy created 263,000 new jobs in April and has now added new jobs in each of the last 103 months. Productivity in the first quarter likewise increased far beyond expectations. High productivity rates and a tight labor market should drive wages higher.
Overall, the economy has improved on many fronts, pushing off the idea, at least temporarily, that a recession is coming. While there is much to celebrate, there are also some warning signs. New residential construction projects are down 13.2%, new-vehicle sales are down this year and there remains tremendous uncertainty surrounding ongoing trade negotiations.
To learn more, download the May “SEMA Industry Indicators” report, now available for free at www.sema.org/research.