US sees manufacturing growth ahead of Fed meeting, GDP data

first_imgHowever, some sectors have begun bouncing back, with retail and new home sales recovering from the coronavirus hit and data from the Commerce Department released Monday showing durable goods orders rising 7.3 percent on demand for transportation equipment.But Oxford Economics warned that the prevalence of coronavirus in the United States, where more than 55,000 new cases were reported in the 24 hours to Sunday, threatens the gains.”The sugar rush from re-openings has now faded and a resurgence of domestic coronavirus cases, alongside very weak demand, supply chain disruptions, historically low oil prices and high levels of uncertainty will weigh heavily on business investment,” Oxford said.An uneventful meeting The Federal Reserve is set to meet this week ahead of a key GDP estimate as new data shows recovery in US manufacturing, although surging coronavirus cases threaten the economy’s gains.The jam-packed week of economic news comes as lawmakers in Washington are debating provisions of another stimulus package to follow up on the US$2.2 trillion CARES Act passed in March as COVID-19 hit.The business shutdowns caused by the pandemic are expected to see the US economy shrink an unprecedented 35 percent in the April-June quarter when the Commerce Department releases its advance GDP estimate on Thursday. Amid the durable goods data, transportation equipment grew 20 percent or $9.2 billion, particularly among motor vehicles and parts, where new orders were up 85.7 percent and shipments rose 83.1 percent.In a sign of Boeing’s continued struggles, new orders for non-defense aircraft slumped -462.3 percent, deep into negative territory, as customers canceled orders previously placed with the plane maker.The Fed will likely take such indicators into account as it begins its two-day Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting on Tuesday, but few big moves are expected since the committee had already slashed its benchmark lending rate to zero in mid-March.If Fed Chair Jerome Powell addresses the surge in COVID-19 cases, he will likely reiterate “that the Fed is prepared if necessary to provide more support to the economy,” said Mickey Levy of Berenberg Capital Markets.Another possibility is that the Fed might link their movement of the lending rate to inflation, Oxford said.Inflation jumped 0.6 percent in June but is expected to stay low with COVID-19 hampering consumer demand, particularly with new claims for unemployment benefits still high. The Labor Department reported nearly 1.42 million claims filed in the week ended July 18.A historic plungeLaid-off Americans have benefited from an additional $600 in aid each week under the terms of the CARES Act, but that money is set to expire on Friday, and Democrats and Republicans in Congress are negotiating over possibly extending it.Analysts expect them to enact more stimulus, but it isn’t clear yet how it will be structured or if the funds will be approved before the emergency unemployment benefits run out.Citing people familiar with the plan, The Washington Post reported Republicans controlling the Senate wants to slash the weekly benefit to $200 until states can implement a system to replace 70 percent of unemployed workers’ wages.Washington is simultaneously bracing for the expected crash in second-quarter GDP to a level not seen in years, but the damage will be somewhat stemmed by a recovery in goods and services in May ahead of a bounceback in the months to come, IHS Markit said in an analysis.”Our forecast of 18.2 percent growth in the third quarter reflects continued (but slowing) recovery in services GDP and a partial reversal in goods GDP of gains exhibited over May and June,” they said.A National Association for Business Economics survey released on Monday reported firms expecting improvements in sales, profit margins and employment after the shutdowns.But while a third of companies have returned to normal operations, nearly the same amount don’t expect to do so for more than six months, the survey said.On top of this week’s data releases will be a slew of earnings reports by large American firms, including tech leaders Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google, as well as McDonald’s, Exxon Mobil and Boeing.Topics :last_img read more

Wolf Administration Assists Confectionery Manufacturer Expansion to Lehigh Valley, Supporting 134 New Jobs

first_img Jobs That Pay,  Press Release,  Workforce Development Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced that Stuffed Puffs, a food processer, will grow its manufacturing operations with its expansion to a 150,000-square-foot building in Hanover Township, Northampton County. The project will support the creation of 134 new, full-time jobs in the commonwealth.“Food processing is one of Pennsylvania’s most robust and vibrant industries, supporting thousands of jobs and generating more than $5 billion in sales annually,” said Gov. Wolf. “It is only fitting that a new, innovative food company would make the commonwealth its new home, and we are proud to make the investment that will turn that plan into reality.”The company will be located at the former Guardian Life property owned by JG Petrucci to manufacture chocolate stuffed marshmallows and plans to make significant improvements to the property. Stuffed Puffs will begin manufacturing operations in May 2020 and has committed to investing $31.5 million in capital funding toward the project and creating 134 jobs within three years.“The idea was born around a campfire,” said Michael Tierney, founder of Stuffed Puffs, who graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY in 2010. “It’s a simple idea, but very hard to execute, which is why it hasn’t been done before. I spent seven years figuring out a truly innovative system that breaks the rules of traditional candy making – our new plant will help this amazing product continue to grow and support our company and community.”Stuffed Puffs received a funding proposal from the Department of Community and Economic Development for a $670,000 Pennsylvania First grant, $268,000 in Job Creation Tax Credits, and $140,400 in grants for workforce training and development. The project was coordinated by the Governor’s Action Team, an experienced group of economic development professionals who report directly to the governor and work with businesses that are considering locating or expanding in Pennsylvania.“The decision of Stuffed Puffs to expand its production operations to the Lehigh Valley is an example of the region becoming a national leader in food and beverage innovation and production,” said Don Cunningham, President & CEO of the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC). “Since coming to Factory to accelerate its growth, Stuffed Puffs has realized the advantages of making its product in the Lehigh Valley and Pennsylvania with the available talent, educational institutions, and access to market. The combined efforts of the state, Northampton County and the City of Bethlehem, and the benefit of Factory LLC being here, is a best practice example of how to grow U.S. manufacturing.”Stuffed Puffs is a confectionery manufacturer that uses a custom designed and highly secretive manufacturing process to make a chocolate-filled marshmallow. The company also has the ability to make multiple shapes and flavors of marshmallows with various fillings. Stuffed Puffs initially launched its product exclusively at Walmart stores and will be expanding to other retailers in 2020.“Stuffed Puffs is the easy new way to make a good old-fashioned American favorite S’mores, even better and it’s delicious also to eat right out of the bag,” said Richard Thompson, Managing Partner at Factory LLC the parent company of Stuffed Puffs. “At Factory LLC we seek innovation and we know Stuffed Puffs is a big winner and the new plant will support our continued growth, because we can’t make it fast enough.”For more information about the Governor’s Action Team or DCED, visit dced.pa.gov. November 12, 2019 Wolf Administration Assists Confectionery Manufacturer Expansion to Lehigh Valley, Supporting 134 New Jobscenter_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more