April Jobless Rate Declines again
April unemployment for Maui island fell to 4.5%. Molokai also dropped, to 8.4%. Lanai had the lowest unemployment rate in the state, at 2.1%.
Nationwide, unemployment rates fell in 21 U.S. states, as hiring has improved for much of the country. Rates increased in 17 states, and were unchanged in the remaining 12. Hiring increased in 34 states and fell in 16. Rates ranged from 2.6% in North Dakota to 8.7% in Rhode Island.
30-year mortgage rate down to 4.12%
15-year rate is also down, to 3.21%. These rates are not going to last long- if you are considering a purchase that will require financing, don't delay- take advantage of them now, before the Federal Reserve stops buying up bonds to artificially lower the cost of borrowing.
U.S. Consumer Confidence jumps to 9-month high
This index is currently the almost at the highest level since the recession began in 2007 as Americans reported greater optimism about their financial situation and the economy..
The University of Michigan says its index of consumer sentiment rose to 84.1 from 80 in March. That's just a point lower than the 85.1 reached last July, which was the highest in nearly 7 years.
Growth Picks up in most of U.S. and the World
A Federal Reserve survey shows economic growth picking up across most of the U.S. over the past two months. Ten of the Fed's 12 regions reported an increase in economic activity. Only Cleveland and St. Louis reported slower growth. Confident that the economy is improving, the Fed has been scaling back bond purchases meant to push long-term interest rates down.
The world's top finance officials at the IMF also expressed confidence last month that the global economy finally has turned the corner to stronger growth. The IMF in its latest economic forecast predicted global growth would strengthen to 3.6% this year and an even better 3.9% in 2015.
That growth is being supported by a stronger recovery in the U.S., which private economists believe could grow this year at the fastest pace in five years.