Empire State Manufacturing Index Rises from Contraction

Written by Sandy Williams

New Yorkers received some respite in the manufacturing sector on Wednesday. The headline general business index of the Empire State Manufacturing Survey rose to 17.2 in July for its first positive reading since February. The index rose 17.4 points from -0.2 in February with 41 percent of respondents reporting improved business conditions during the month.

New orders and shipments saw index readings jump roughly 15 points to 13.9 and 18.5, respectively. Unfilled orders were unchanged and delivery times were slightly longer. The inventory index fell 9.1 points to -9.7.

The prices paid index dipped two points to 14.9, indicating that input prices increased at about the same pace as last month. The prices received index showed declining selling prices, dropping 4.5 points to -3.9.

Number of employees climbed from contraction to post 0.4, while the average workweek improved to -2.6 from -12.00 in June.

Survey participants were less confident about future business conditions. “After rising sharply last month to a multi-year high, the index for future business conditions fell 18 points to 38.4, suggesting that firms remained optimistic about future conditions, though less so than in June,” said the New York Federal Reserve.

Employment levels are expected to increase in the coming months. Firms also signaled that more capital spending is likely.

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