A decline in the confidence of Los Angeles County consumers continues–raising concern about where the local economy is heading, since consumer spending accounts for about 70% of economic activity in our communities.
According to the index recently released by the Lowe Institute of Political Economy at Claremont McKenna College, Los Angeles consumer sentiment declined by approximately 2% in the first quarter of 2017, following a sharp 12 % decline in the fourth quarter of 2016.
Sales at U.S. stores, restaurants and online retailers increased a seasonally adjusted 0.4% in April from the prior month, the largest gain in three months, the Commerce Department said Friday. Also, the University of Michigan reported its consumer-sentiment index rose to 97.7 in early May—the strongest reading since January, when sentiment reached a 13-year high.
Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased in every state and the District of Columbia in the fourth quarter of 2016, according to statistics on the geographic breakout of GDP released today by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. Real GDP by state growth ranged from 3.4 percent in Texas to 0.1 percent in Kansas and Mississippi (table 1 and chart 1). Finance and insurance; retail trade; and professional, scientific, and technical services were the leading contributors to U.S. economic growth in the fourth quarter.
Preliminary findings in the group’s annual report suggest that travel spending in the state was $126.3 billion, up about 3% from 2015. The industry supported more than 1 million jobs, up 3.4% from last year.
The state added more than 300,000 residents last year with the largest increases in big cities, according to a report released Monday by the California Department of Finance.