By the numbers: The economy this week

Update for April 12, 2021

Highlights of key economic statistics from last week compiled by Putnam Investments.


  • The Markit U.S. Composite PMI Output Index rose to 59.7 in March from 59.5 in February.
  • Factory orders fell 0.8% in February following nine months of gains, according to the Census Bureau.
  • The Producer Price Index for final demand rose 1.0% in March, the Bureau of Labor Statistics noted.


  • Initial jobless claims reached 744,000 in the week ended April 3, 2021, the Labor Department reported.


  • As of April 6, 2021, net dividend rate changes for U.S. domestic stocks increased $18 billion in the first quarter, compared with $9.5 billion in Q4 2020, S&P Dow Jones Indices reported.


  • Consumer optimism rose for the fourth consecutive month, nearly reaching a pre-pandemic level, according to a recent IBD/TIPP poll.


  • The Markit Eurozone Composite PMI Output Index increased to 53.2 in March from 48.8 in February.
  • The Markit Eurozone Construction PMI increased to 50.1 in March from 45.0 in February.
  • Eurostat reported that euro-area industrial producer prices rose 0.5% in February compared with January.


  • The yield on the 10-year Treasury note declined.
  • In meeting minutes, Federal Reserve policy makers noted employment and inflation goals, and said they expected to maintain accommodative policy until the outcomes were achieved.


  • Divergent vaccination rollout timelines and virus mutations risk causing a shift from a synchronized global recovery to a more fractured regional multi-speed recovery.
  • Global leverage, created by pandemic response packages, is at worrisome levels and eventually will need to be paid for.
  • Pandemic and financial repression policies have exacerbated global wealth inequality.

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All economic and performance information is historical and does not guarantee future results. The views and opinions expressed are those of Putnam Investments, are subject to change with market conditions, and are not meant as investment advice.