MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY
Initial unemployment claims flat, but PUA applications rise 11 percent
In the week ending September 5, initial unemployment claims were 884,000, unchanged from the previous week’s revised level, but applications for PUA (covering gig workers and the self-employed) rose by 90,923 to 838,916. Continuing claims during the week ending August 29 were 13.4 million, an increase of 93,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The total number of people claiming benefits in all programs for the week ending August 22 was 29.6 million, an increase of 380,379 from the previous week.
Producer Price Index up 0.3 percent in August, but fell 0.2 percent year-on-year
The Producer Price Index for final demand increased 0.3 percent in August, but declined 0.2 percent year-on-year. The increase in August was led by a 0.5-percent increase in the index for final demand services, while the goods index rose 0.1 percent. The index for final demand less foods, energy, and trade services moved up 0.3 percent in August, the same as in both July and June, and was also up 0.3 percent year-on-year.
Mortgage loans in forbearance fall another 4 basis points to 7.16 percent
The total number of loans now in forbearance decreased by 4 basis points from 7.20 percent of servicers’ portfolio volume in the prior week to 7.16 percent as of August 30, 2020. According to MBA’s estimate, 3.6 million homeowners are in forbearance plans.