Weather Effects Continue to Influence Economic Data
· Housing starts plunged 16 percent in January to an 880,000-unit pace. Building permit activity also declined for the month but not as sharply.
· Inflation indicators continued to reflect subdued price pressures on businesses and consumers. The new producer price final demand index rose a modest 0.2 percent in January while the Consumer Prices Index posted a slight 0.1 percent rise for the month.
· The leading economic index rose 0.3 percent in January, indicating continued modest economic activity in the months ahead.
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