Rates began the week even to slightly better after a mixed slate of Fundamentals, highlighted below.
Personal Income and Spending (March 2012)
Personal Income – Month/Month +0.4%
Consumer Spending – Month/Month +0.3%. Previous was +0.9%
Personal Income – Year/Year +3.2%
Consumer Spending – Year/Year +4.0%
Real (inflation adjusted) disposable income increased 0.2 percent in March, in contrast to a decrease of 0.1 percent in February.
PCE Price Index – Month/Month +0.2%
Core PCE price index – Month/Month +0.2%
PCE Price Index — Year/Year change +2.1%
Core PCE price index – Year/Year +2.0 %
PCE (Personal Consumption Expense) is an inflation gauge geared to consumers.
It’s the Fed’s preferred consumer inflation measure, and inflation isn’t a threat right now.
Chicago PMI (April 2012)
– Business Barometer Index 56.2. While this indicates expansion this is lower than expectations and the lowest level since November 2009.
Dallas Fed Manufacturing Survey (April 2012)
– Business Activity Index was -3.4. Previous was 10.8.
Going back to last Friday’s weak GDP. The growth in “I” (business investment and inventories) was +0.59% in 1stQ2012 contrasted with +1.81% in 4thQ2011. Business continues to cut back on spending because it overestimated the depth of the recovery.