A gauge of U.S. business investment plans fell slightly in August while the number of Americans filing new applications for jobless benefits barely rose last week, signs that global economic headwinds were doing little to impede U.S. growth.
Other economic data released on Thursday showed new home sales rose in August to the highest level since early 2008, further evidence the domestic economy was on the upswing.
The Commerce Department said capital goods orders excluding military wares and aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, dropped 0.2 percent last month, a slightly bigger fall than analysts polled by Reuters had expected.
However, August’s decline followed a gain in July that was the largest in over a year and which had boosted optimism that many American companies were unfazed by weak overseas markets.
The recent trend in orders gives a good signal for economic growth in the third quarter after business investment on equipment fell in the April-June period.