December Employment Increased in 42 States Compared To December 2009
“Seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll employment decreased in 35 states and the District of Columbia and increased in 15 states from November to December, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported on Tuesday. Compared with December 2009, employment increased in 42 states and D.C. and decreased in eight states,” as reported by Data DiGest.
Data DiGest said “Compensation costs (wages and salaries, plus benefits) for private industry workers increased 2.1% over the year, vs. 1.2% in 2009, BLS reported on Friday. BLS pointed out that the 0.9% increase for construction was the lowest of any sector it measured. In 2009, compensation in construction rose only 0.7%. Compensation in construction rose just 0.1%, seasonally adjusted, in the fourth quarter, 0.5% in the third, 0 in the second and 0.4% in the first. Construction wages and salaries slipped 0.1% in the fourth quarter. BLS did not report the change in construction benefits separately.
Real (net of inflation) gross domestic product grew at a 3.2% seasonally adjusted annual rate in the fourth quarter, vs. 2.6% in the third and 1.7% in the second, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported on Friday. Real investment in private nonresidential structures rose 0.8%, the first increase since the second quarter of 2008. Real private residential investment rose 5.8%. Real government investment in structures increased 2.2%. The GDP price index edged up 0.3%. The price index for private nonresidential structures rose 3.2%; residential investment, 2.1%; and government structures, 2.4%.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued its latest Economic and Budget Outlook on Wednesday, including projections for the Highway Trust Fund. “In Fiscal Year 2011, CBO estimates that outlays from the Highway Account will total $35.6 billion and that outlays from the Transit account will total $7.6 billion. We estimate that revenues and interest will total $31.3 and $5.1 billion, respectively. As a result, we estimate that the end-of-year balances will be $15.4 billion for the Highway Account and $6.9 billion for the Transit Account.
We estimate that the Highway Account will end Fiscal Year 2012 with a balance of $4.2 billion, suggesting that the Highway Account will likely have some trouble meeting obligations at some point towards the end of that year, depending on cash flows into and out of the fund. We estimate that the Transit Account will have similar problems sometime in Fiscal Year 2013.” CBO estimated that by September 30, 2011, “stimulus” funds totaling $23.6 billion will have been spent on highways, with $3.7 billion remaining, and $6.6 billion on transit projects, with $2.2 billion remaining.
The vacancy rate for industrial space fell in the fourth quarter to 10.4%, real-estate research firm Grubb & Ellis reported on Wednesday, from 10.5% in the third quarter, 10.6% in the second and 10.9% in the first. ‘indicating that the industrial market is recovering, but not quickly….Net absorption moved decisively higher to 24.2 million square feet, the strongest quarterly performance in three years but well below the quarterly average of 44.3 million square feet during the vigorous expansion of 2005 through 2007. Construction remained near the cyclical low with just 4.4 million square feet of new space delivered in the fourth quarter and 12.1 million square feet left in the construction pipeline. Build-to-suit projects comprised three-quarters of the deliveries and the space still under construction.’”