Wednesday, 23 May, 2018

US Factory-Sector Activity Hits Six-Year High

US factories are seeing gains in output and employment according to the Institute for Supply Management US factories are seeing gains in output and employment according to the Institute for Supply Management
Debra Rodriguez | 02 September, 2017, 01:13

Manufacturing expanded at a faster rate in August, helped by employment gains, the Institute for Supply Management said in a monthly report.

August's index reading registered 58.8, up from July's reading of 56.3. The total is the percentage who reported growth, so a reading above 50 indicates expansion.

New orders were also better than expected, with the index coming in at 60.3 versus the consensus estimate of 60.0, but softening very slightly from the previous month's 60.4. The August PMI was the highest since April 2011.

The reading exceeded economist expectations and suggests stronger global growth, a soft dollar, a booming stock market and rising consumer and business confidence are boosting American manufacturers. However, at 4.8, it continues to be supportive of future growth, albeit slower, in the sector, stated TD Economics in a research report. Nine of the ten index components grew, while the customers' inventories index contracted for the second consecutive month.

The closely-watched ISM purchasing managers survey showed all six of the "big six" industries - representing 70 per cent of manufacturing GDP - accelerating activity last month. It may not be the largest share of the United States economy, but the manufacturing sector is on fire.

While the price index was flat, it remains at a high level with all but two industries reporting paying increased prices for raw materials last month. Eleven industries reported higher inventories, while five reported a decrease.

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