By Trang Nguyen, THETAKEAWAY: Philly Fed Index andExisting Home Sales Fall more than Expected; Leading IndicatorsExceed Estimate > Mixed Signs about theHealth of the U.S. Economy > USDMixed Philadelphia Fed Index The Philadelphia Fed Index declined more than expected inApril , reflecting a modest expansion in the regional manufacturingactivity. April Business Outlook Survey of Federal Reserve Bankof Philadelphia showed the index fell to 8.5 this month from 12.5 in March . The reading exceeds consensus forecast of12.0 from the Bloomberg News survey. The Philly Fed Index gaugeschanges in business growth in the third district includingPennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. The index above 0 indicatesfactory-sector growth while below 0 indicatescontraction. Within the Philadelphia Fed survey, indexesfor general activity, new orders and shipments allremained positive but slightly weaker than their March reading. Onthe contrary, the indicator for current employment posted a notableimprovement. Manufacturing executives were also more optimisticabout their plans for hiring over next six month. Besides, firmscontinued to report prices pressures that were only slightly morewidespread compared to last month, though. Existing Home S ales Sales of previously-owned homes unexpectedly fell in March as a result ofdeclining completed transactions of single-family, condominiums and co-ops . The National Association of Realtors reportedtoday that existing home sales disappointingly slipped 2.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of4. 48 million in Februa ry from an upwardly revised 4. 60 million in the previous month. Meanwhile, economists polled by Bloombergsurvey had predicted 0.7 percent gain to 4.62 million. Despite March fall, the recovery is in the process of setting into a higher level of home sales. “The recovery is happening though not at a breakout pace, but we have seen nine consecutive months of year-over-year sales increases, said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. Besides a decline in existing home sales tabulated when a contract closes, Realtors have reported shortages of housing stocks in some markets. The dwelling inventory at the end of March fell 1.3 percent to 2.37 million, and the lack of inventory in several markets became a profound matter as housing supply could not meet buyer interest. Leading Indicators The U.S. Leading Economic Indicator, a gauge ofthe economic outlook for the next three to six months, rose forthe sixth consecutive month in March , suggesting positive condition in the world’s largest economy in early2012. The index advanced 0. 3 percent last month , following a 0.7 percent rise in February and 0.4 percent gain in January , the Conference B oard reported today. The print exceeds median projections of a 0 .2 percent increase Bloomberg News survey . Seven of ten components made up an increase inthe March leading index, led by financial and creditindicators and average workweek in manufacturing. Stockprices indicator surged 0.1 percent last month afterrising 0.15 percent in February and 0.17 percent in January . Interest rate spread c ontinued its upward trend, rising 22percent. Meanwhile, t hree components representing for manufacturingclimate suggest relatively modest contribution from industrialproduction to the overall indicator. Consumer goods orders and orders for nondefense capital goods excludingaircraft both edged up 0.1 percent in March. Incontrast, ISM new orders slides 0.02 percent, marking the secondmonthly fall. EURUSD 1-minute Chart: April 19 ,2012 Chart createdusing Strategy Trader – Preparedby Trang Nguyen U.S. dollar traded mixed in North American morning tradetoday as the reserve currency strengthens versus higher-yieldingcurrencies and Japanese yen but weakens against Swiss franc,British pound and euro. In the minutes following mixed results fromPhilly Fed Index, Existing Home Sales and Leading Indicatorsreports, the greenback weakens versus most of major peers. The U.S.dollar slipped about 30 pips against the single currency from1.3120 to 1.3150 per euro within 30 minutes and trades at $1.3143per euro, at the time this report was written. --- Written by Trang Nguyen, DailyFX Research Team for DailyFX.com To contact Trang, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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