News In Brief

Data Points

Paddy Hirsch Aug 30, 2011

The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index shows the U.S. National Home Price Index rose 3.6 percent in the second quarter. But it was still down 5.9 percent versus the second quarter of 2010. Nationally, home prices are back to their early 2003 levels.

The Conference Board said its Consumer Confidence Index fell 15 points to 44.5. That was far lower than economists had predicted, and the lowest level since April 2009.

The portion of car loans made to subprime borrowers rose to 40.8 percent in the second quarter from 37.2 percent a year earlier.

Japan’s unemployment rate rose to 4.7 percent in July as payrolls fell by 40,000 from June. Retail sales fell 0.3 percent from June.

European economic confidence in August fell to 98.3, from a revised 103 in July, its lowest level since May 2010.

The average hedge fund has lost 4.1 percent during August – making the month the industry’s fourth worst ever.

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