Weekly Economic Update

For the week of April 30 – May 4.

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US first quarter GDP (first print) came in at 2.3 percent, higher than increased expectations of 2.0 percent. The increase in the first quarter reflects positive contributions from non-residential fixed investment, personal consumption expenditures, exports, private inventory investment, federal government spending, and state and local government spending. However, personal consumption expenditures, exports, and state and local government spending all decelerated, causing overall deceleration in first quarter GDP. As a result, personal consumption decelerated to 1.1 percent in the first quarter from 4.0 percent.

The University of Michigan’s final print of its April sentiment index showed a decrease to 98.8 from 101.4 in March. However, this was higher than consensus expectations of 98.0, and also higher than the preliminary reading of 97.8. The current conditions gauge, which measures Americans’ perceptions of their finances, fell to 114.9 from the record 121.2 in the prior month. The expectations measure also eased to 88.4 from 88.8.

Canadian releases this week include manufacturing, international merchandise trade, and February GDP. After declining 0.1 percent month-over-month in January, February GDP is expected to bounce back into positive territory, increasing 0.3 percent. On a yearly basis, GDP is expected to come in at 2.8 percent. US releases this week include manufacturing, personal spending and income, home figures, and the employment report. The Fed is also scheduled to announce their rate decision this week. Consensus expectations are for the Fed to leave rates unchanged at 1.50-1.75 percent at this meeting.

The Canadian dollar is trading slightly down from Friday’s market close. Today’s expected trading range is 1.2818 – 1.2918.

Source: Bloomberg

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