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Saturday, September 3, 2011

Wells Fargo's Weekly Economic & Financial Commentary- September 2, 2011

- Nonfarm payrolls did not grow during August due to net job losses in the retail trade, manufacturing, construction, information services, and government sectors.

. Average hourly earnings and average weekly hours also declined in August, placing further downward pressure on consumer purchasing power.

- The unemployment rate held steady at 9.1 percent, as the household survey showed an increase of 331,000 in both jobs and the labor force during August.

- Personal spending rose 0.8 percent in July month-over-month, and the annualized 3-month moving average continued to grow at a 2.7 percent pace.

. Consumers had to dip into their savings to achieve this modest pace of spending, however, as the personal savings rate fell to 5.0 percent from 5.5 percent in July.

- Consumer confidence sank to 44.5 from 59.2 in July, the lowest reading since April 2009.

- The Dallas Fed manufacturing activity index for August declined to -11.4 from -2.0 during August, consistent with recent weakness in the Empire State and Philly Fed indexes.

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