Survey US service firms expand in July at fastest pace since February

by Martin Crutsinger, The Associated Press Posted Aug 5, 2013 10:19 am MDT Survey: US service firms expand in July at fastest pace since February on rise in new orders AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email WASHINGTON – U.S. service firms expanded in July at the fastest pace since February, fueled by a brisker month of sales and a jump in new orders. The increase suggests economic growth could be picking up after a weak first half of the year.The Institute for Supply Management said Monday that its index of service-sector growth rose in July to 56.0, up from 52.2 in June. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion.The survey covers businesses that employ 90 per cent of the workforce, such as retail, construction, health care and financial services.A measure of business activity, which includes current sales, rose to 60.4. That’s the highest since December and was driven in part by faster home construction. And a gauge of new orders, which indicates sales over the next few months, increased to 57.7 — a five-month high.Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, noted that 16 of the 18 industries surveyed reported growth in July, “encouraging news for the broader U.S. economy.”Paul Dales, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics, said the July gains in the service sector, along with a solid month of manufacturing growth, suggest the economy is growing at an annual rate of 3 per cent in the July-September quarter. That’s nearly double the rate in the April-June quarter.One concern is that a measure of employment at service companies fell in July. That echoed last week’s government employment report that showed hiring has slowed.Employers added 162,000 jobs last month, the Labor Department said Friday. That’s down from 188,000 in June. Nearly all of the hiring took place at service firms. And most new jobs were in low-paying industries — half were at retail business or restaurants and bars.Growth in the service industry depends largely on consumers, whose spending drives roughly 70 per cent of economic activity. On Friday, the government said consumers increased their spending in June at the fastest pace in four month.The economy grew at a tepid 1.7 per cent annual rate from April through June. That’s up only slightly from the 1.1 per cent annual rate in the previous quarter and the third straight month of subpar economic growth.Still, the rise in consumer spending and service activity follows other reports that point to stronger growth.Home sales and prices continue to rise, and Americans’ confidence in the economy stayed last month close to a 5 1/2 -year high.U.S. factories have begun to rebound after slumping at the start of the year. A separate ISM released last week showed manufacturing activity jumped in July to the highest level in two years, reflecting a surge in new orders, increasing hiring and rising factory output.Businesses have ordered more industrial machinery and other equipment for four straight months. Steady gains in new-home sales and construction are supporting strong growth in industries such as wood products, furniture, and electrical equipment and appliances. And healthy auto sales are buoying growth in the production of metal parts and components.. read more

Lord Buckethead Mr Fishfinger and Elmo among those photobombing main candidates

first_imgMr FishFinger is the hero this country needs, true hero.— Alex Taylor (@AlexTaylor_8) June 9, 2017 249! A new Buckethead record! Something to celebrate, eh? #GeneralElection17— Lord Buckethead (@LordBuckethead) June 9, 2017  Americans unused to the British tradition of strange joke candidates were confused as to why Lord Buckethead was standing behind Theresa May in Maidenhead.He got a few hundred votes too, but it was difficult to tell whether he was pleased as he was wearing full face covering.The candidate, whose real name is unknown, won 249 votes in the Kent constituency. That candidate in the middle (running against Theresa May) is called “Lord Buckethead”. God bless you, British politics.— Barry Malone (@malonebarry) June 9, 2017 Mrs May, by contrast, won 37,718 – or 64.76 per cent of the vote. Nevertheless, Lord Buckethead celebrated the result as “A new Buckethead record!”He proudly informed his 2,000 Twitter followers that he is an “intergalactic space lord, running to be an independent member of parliament for Maidenhead.” Theresa May, Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron, the leaders of the three main parties, were photobombed by rival candidates during their victory speeches.A joke candidate, Mr Fish Finger, mocked Lib Dem leader Tim Farron throughout the campaign, and brought down the gravity of the occasion as he made faces behind Mr Farron during his victory speech.He seemed pleased that he got just over 400 votes, tweeting: “Absolutely shattered walking back to hotel for a few hours in the freezer then off to London in the afternoon thanks everyone”. Jeremy Corbyn was photobombed in a less fun way – the Ukip candidate behind him mouthed he was a “terrorist sympathiser” as the Labour leader celebrated his massive win in Islington North. Non entity UKIP candidate @MrKeithFraser mouthing ‘Terrorist Sympathiser’ behind @jeremycorbyn’s back in Islington.— Andy Heaton (@Andrew_Heaton) June 9, 2017 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

TT woman 60 found dead with throat slit

(Trinidad Guardian) Valencia residents were left in shock yesterday, after a senior citizen was found dead on her bed, naked and with her hands tied behind her back and her throat slit.Steve Miguel, second from left, and his wife Christine look on as undertakers remove the body of Elizabeth Lewis from her Valencia home last night. Lewis was found nude with her hands tied and her throat slit. PHOTOS: RALPH BANWARIEElizabeth Susan Lewis, 60, of Old Valencia Road, Valencia, was found around 6 pm by her son-in-law Steve Miguel and daughter Christine, who had gone to drop food for her and clean the surroundings of her wooden house. On their arrival at the house, her son-in-law and daughter found the front door partially opened.When they went inside they found Lewis dead on her bed and called the Sangre Grande police.Lewis was reportedly living by herself in the wooden house, which has no electricity or pipe-borne water. She was the mother of three, two boys and one girl.Police who arrived on the scene cordoned off the crime scene to prevent villagers and other relatives, who had gathered after news of the killing spread, from interfering with their investigation. However, Homicide officers gave up their search for clues because of the darkness and are expected to return today.Lewis eldest son, Mario, who lives in west Trinidad, told T&T Guardian he had tried several times to get his mother to move in with him but failed to convince her.“My mom was a decent, quiet and loving lady, she will always advise us to stay away from trouble and live a life where we will be loved,” he said.“My mother never wanted to leave Valencia because of her roots in Valencia. If my mother was murdered I want swift justice. My mom does not deserve to die in this cruel manner.”Miguel described his mother-in-law as a humble and jovial woman. He said he and his wife visited her every evening to take food for her.“She never seemed to be lonely and always in good frame of mind. I will deeply missed her,” he said.Her daughter was too distraught to speak with the media.District Medical Officer Fogarola viewed the body and ordered its removal to the Forensic Science Center for a post mortem today.Visiting the scene were Snr Supt Garth Nelson, ASP Mario Robain, Insp Ken Lutchman Sgt Harper and officers from Homicide Region II Arouca.Homicide officers are continuing the investigation. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedT&T woman killed by partner after years of abuseJuly 27, 2017In “latest news”Jilted Daughter – in – Law is main suspect in Agricola murderFebruary 1, 2014In “Crime”T&T woman brutally stabbed to death, attacker kills selfJanuary 25, 2017In “latest news” read more