The US economy continues to generate jobs at a healthy pace and the average increase in employment over the first six months of 2013 was 202.000 jobs per month, making this the best first half of the year since 2005. Consumer confidence as measured by The Conference Board has risen to its highest level since the beginning of 2008. The manufacturing sector continues to expand slowly. Manufacturing production was unchanged in the second quarter compared to the first, but increased in both May and June, offsetting weakness earlier in the quarter. However, significant challenges still remain as key drivers such as manufacturers’ shipments have been essentially flat this year. US GDP growth has also been sluggish, up at a 1.8% annual rate in the first quarter and 1.7% in the second quarter. While we are optimistic the economy will improve in the second half, the recovery remains below its prerecession peak for many measures of industrial activity.
Source : Cushman & Wakefield