May 2, 2014
This week, we kicked off World Trade Month 2014 with many events planned across the country. This is a unique opportunity to learn how to access the 95 percent of consumers who live outside the United States. Also this week, Secretary Pritzker met with the AMP Steering Committee and the Manufacturing Council, while Dr. Gallagher spoke to ASME’s Public Policy Symposium about the importance of American manufacturing. Around Commerce, it was confirmed that fisheries play a vital role in America’s economy; NIST is helping in the battle against cancer; and USPTO continues to hit their trademark processing goals, even as filings increased. A special thank you to the employees of the National Weather Service for their great work this week in saving lives and providing accurate forecasts for the severe weather faced in many parts of the country. Finally, don’t miss your opportunity to wish Secretary Pritzker (@PennyPritzker) a happy birthday on Twitter. -Bruce
May is World Trade Month 2014 - Happy World Trade Month! For the United States, the benefits of trade have been great, as have our successes. We recently announced that for the fourth straight year, the United States set a record for annual exports in 2013, at $2.3 trillion. That is a 40 percent growth in total exports since 2009. Behind those exports are millions of well-paying American jobs – a record 11.3 million jobs to be exact. That number is an increase of 1.6 million from 2009. Visit the link for a few of the many events going on.
Commerce Department Collaborates with Regional Partners to Make the U.S. a Magnet for Advanced Manufacturing and Good Paying Jobs - This week, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker met with the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP) Steering Committee 2.0 and the Manufacturing Council to discuss issues affecting the health of America’s manufacturing industry, including progress on the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI). In addition, Dr. Pat Gallagher, National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) Director performing the duties of the deputy secretary, spoke at ASME’s 2014 Engineering Public Policy Symposium. Dr. Gallagher talked about the importance of NNMI as an innovation investment to ensure American competitiveness.
Statement from U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker on Big Data and Privacy Working Group Review Findings - We recognize that the United States is a leader in this field of Big Data – and we want to ensure that continues. And one of our core priorities here at the Department is how we unleash more of our government data – to create more innovation and economic opportunity. Both of these are central themes in this report. I have been very active in making sure the perspective of business is at the table in this conversation – and the Department of Commerce will continue to do that. This report is only the beginning of what will be a continuing dialogue among government, business, consumers, entrepreneurs, and other stakeholders about maximizing the benefits and minimizing the risks of big data. That ongoing dialogue will focus on ensuring that companies and consumers have a sound legal and policy framework for innovation.
Fishing’s Impacts Ripple across the Broader Economy - Fishing is big business in the United States. From commercial fisheries to recreational and charter boat business owners, fishing contributes to the United States’ economy and supports jobs. According to new reports by NOAA Fisheries, we continue to see positive economic impacts from commercial and recreational U.S. fisheries as well as progress in rebuilding our nation’s fish stocks. Between 2011 and 2012 alone, U.S. commercial and recreational saltwater fishing generated more than $199 billion in sales impacts, contributed $89 billion to gross domestic product, and supported 1.7 million jobs.
NIST Research Offers Guide in Formulating Cancer Treatment Drugs - Potentially valuable drugs slowed down by sticky molecules may get another shot at success. Joint research by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Genentech, the University of Delaware and Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL) has revealed the reason why a certain class of proteins tends to form clusters that lead to high viscosity in drug solutions. The newly published results could help drug companies create a variety of cancer and autoimmune disease treatments based on monoclonal antibodies, whose stickiness can make them difficult to administer through thin needles.
Discover the Next Markets for Your Business - Succeeding in the global marketplace is all about intelligence. Businesses need to understand their target markets, identify the key opportunities, and have the resources to compete. That’s what the DISCOVER GLOBAL MARKETS (DGM) Business Forum Series is all about. This week in San Antonio and at other U.S. cities in the near future, business leaders from around the country are joining U.S. Commercial Service staff from around the world to help companies do three things: Compete, win, and grow in the global marketplace.
A Major Win for the Open Internet - As one of Brazil’s leading Internet scholars and chair of Netmundial Virgilio Almeida brought NETmundial to a close, the U.S. government delegation rose in applause. And almost everyone else in the room rose with us. We applauded to affirm the Multistakeholder Statement of São Paulo, the ideas it presents, the ideals it embraces, and the multistakeholder process that made it possible. We rose out of appreciation for the Brazilians and the Internet community leaders that brought us together and impressively managed a challenging conversation. And we rose in joint commitment to preserving, promoting, and expanding the benefits of a single, interoperable, open, and global Internet for all of the world’s people.
New Expansion to Support New Opportunities - The Department’s International Trade Administration (ITA) will open offices in five new markets, bringing Foreign Commercial Service (CS) officers into some of the world's most rapidly developing economies. In cooperation with the U.S. State Department, we will open offices in Angola, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Burma this calendar year.
Trademark Performance Update - The Trademark office has made great progress towards setting and achieving high quality standards. Quality results are evidence that the specialized training, online tools, and enhanced communication efforts we’re using are proving effective. The results for our newest quality standard for assessing efforts that go beyond procedural and statutory correctness continue to exceed our expectations. They demonstrate ‘exceptional’ results preparing a first action.
Participate in the Dialogue on Improving Federal Procurement - The Chief Acquisition Officers Council (CAOC), in coordination with the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council (FAR Council), the Chief Information Officers Council (CIOC), the General Services Administration (GSA), and the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP), is conducting an open dialogue to discuss improvements to the federal acquisition process. One area of discussion is how to encourage participation by small and minority businesses, new entrants, and non-traditional government contractors.
Commerce in the Community: Opportunity Nation Works to Expand Economic Mobility and Promote a 21st Century Workforce - This post is part of the Commerce in the Community series highlighting the work of community leaders and organizations that are strengthening the middle class and providing ladders of opportunity for all Americans. It is an interview with Mark Edwards, Executive Director of Opportunity Nation, which he launched in 2011 with a coalition of more than 250 cross-sector partners.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) wrote that real consumer spending rose in March and thatGDP growth slowed in the first quarter of 2014 on their blog this week.
March 2014 new orders for manufactured goods increased 1.1 percent, to $493.9 billion. Shipments increased 0.3 percent, to $494.9 billion. Unfilled orders increased 0.6 percent, to $1,069.3 billion. And inventories rose 0.1 percent, to $643.1 billion.
Construction spending in March 2014 was $942.5 billion at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, up 0.2 percent from the February 2014 estimate and up 8.4 percent from March 2013.
Personal income in March 2014 increased 0.5 percent. Nominal personal consumption expenditures (PCE) rose 0.9 percent while real PCE grew 0.7 percent. Nominal disposable personal income (DPI) rose 0.5 percent while real DPI increased 0.3 percent. The personal saving rate as a percentage of DPI was 3.8 percent in March.
Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 0.1 percent in the first quarter of 2014, according to today’s advance estimate.
Commerce Data in the News: The Wall Street Journal cites Census Bureau population statistics in an article about the Lone Star State’s prosperous economy, crowded highways and strained water supplies in Boom Time in Texas: Jobs, Traffic, Water Worries.
The Wall Street Journal cites Census Bureau population projections that show Americans are having more babies, a trend driven by older and better-educated women who were less affected by the recession in Signs of a Coming Baby Boomlet in the U.S. Driven by Older Moms.
The Washington Post uses the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey statistics on educational attainment to produce a map that visualizes counties by the percentage of citizens who have attained bachelor’s degrees in How Well-Educated is Your Home County?
U.S. News & World Report writes that the drop in homeownership for Americans younger than 35 is the lowest since the Census Bureau’s Housing Vacancy Survey began tabulating homeownership by age in 1982 in Homeownership for Millennials Declines to New Lows.
Data Releases Next Week: International Trade: March (Census and BEA); Monthly Wholesale Trade: March (Census)
Starting on Saturday, Assistant Secretary for Global Markets Arun Kumar will lead the ITA Healthcare Trade Mission to Turkey, in Ankara, Izmir and Istanbul. He will also participate in SelectUSA related events in Ankara and Istanbul.
On Saturday, Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) National Director Alejandra Castillo will travel to Detroit, MI to deliver the keynote address at the Urban Agenda Policy Summit hosted by the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus. She will talk about the agency and the Detroit MBDA Business Center’s availability to help local Detroit minority-owned businesses.
On Monday, Secretary Pritzker will help kick off the “Big A” Conference at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in Alexandria, VA. On the first day of Public Service Recognition Week, she will thank the hundreds of Commerce Department employees who work in acquisition, financial management, budgeting, risk management, and performance. She will highlight the importance of operational excellence, a key priority area of the Department’s Open for Business Agenda and strategic plan.
Starting on Monday, as part of a joint U.S. Air Force and National Weather Service initiative, representatives of NOAA’s National Hurricane Center will travel aboard a U.S. Air Force Reserve Command C-130 Hercules Hurricane Hunter aircraft during a five-city Caribbean Hurricane Awareness tour across Latin America. Proposed sites are Manzanillo, Mexico; Zihuatnajo, Mexico; Huatulco, Mexico; St. Vincent; and San Juan, Puerto Rico.
On Tuesday, MBDA National Director Alejandra Castillo will moderate a panel entitled “Access to Capital Forum” at the Federal Reserve of New York in New York, NY. The panel includes financial industry experts who will highlight a variety of financing options, including traditional financing options, non-traditional alternatives and new lending platforms.
Also on Tuesday, NOAA Administrator Kathryn Sullivan will join Dr. John Holdren, Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) for the OSTP and the U.S. Global Change Research Program release of the National Climate Assessment (NCA). The media and stakeholder event will be held at the White House. The National Climate Assessment is required by the Global Change Research Act of 1990 and must be conducted every four years. The NCA assesses the impacts of climate variability and change across U.S. regions (including coasts and oceans) and sectors and projects major trends over the subsequent 25 to 100 years.
Also on Tuesday, USPTO will host a Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) public roundtable designed to educate the public on PTAB activities and processes in Dallas, TX. The roundtables are designed to educate the public and collect feedback about the America Invents Act (AIA) trial proceedings.
On Wednesday, Secretary Pritzker will participate in an armchair interview at the 44th Annual Conference on the Americas. She will discuss the Administration’s efforts to strengthen commercial and economic ties between the United States and the fast-growing economies of the Western Hemisphere, which is home to more than half of the United States’ free trade agreements.
Also on Wednesday, Under Secretary for Economic Affairs Mark Doms will attend the German American Business Council’s Ninth Annual Maifest Dinner in Washington, DC. He will discuss the macro economy, data plan, and public private partnerships with business leaders and other members of government at the reception and dinner.
On Thursday, as part of Public Service Recognition Week, Secretary Pritzker will participate in a panel with other Cabinet members at the 4th annual Public Service Town Hall in Washington, DC, sponsored by the Partnership for Public Service. The panel will discuss the importance of public service, how to attract and retain talented workers, investing in the government workforce, and other issues. The panel will be moderated by Cokie Roberts of ABC News.
Also on Thursday, USPTO Deputy Director Michelle Lee will speak at USPTO’s 17th annual Community Day in Alexandria, VA. The event is designed to bring the community of the USPTO together and show not only how its employees differ in individual backgrounds and lives, but how they come together to form the greatest intellectual property community in the world.
Also on Thursday, USPTO will host a Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) public roundtable designed to educate the public on PTAB activities and processes in Denver, CO. The roundtables are designed to educate the public and collect feedback about the America Invents Act (AIA) trial proceedings.
On Friday, BEA Deputy Director Brian Moyer will host a meeting of the BEA Advisory Committee. Under Secretary Mark Doms will deliver opening remarks. The Committee advises the BEA on matters related to the development and improvement of the Bureau’s national, regional, industry, and international economic accounts and provides recommendations.
Secretary Pritzker spoke at the Women in Finance Symposium about how to achieve economic growth and prosperity for all Americans.
BONUS PHOTO OF THE WEEK
Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director Patrick Gallagher received the American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ President’s Award this week.
Secretary Pritzker on the Women in Finance Panel.