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Manufacturing contracts for the fourth consecutive month

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Manufacturing contracts for the fourth consecutive month

Closely-watched manufacturing index a mixed bag.

According to the closely watched Institute for Supply Management’s Manufacturing Report on Business, economic activity in the manufacturing sector contracted in January for the fourth consecutive month.

The January PMI came in at 48.2%, an increase of 0.2 percentage point from the seasonally adjusted December reading of 48%. (A reading under 50% indicates contraction.)

The New Orders Index increased 2.7 percentage points during the month, registering at 51.5%, while the Production Index increased 0.3 percentage point to 50.2%. 

Employment slowed during the month, as the Employment Index registered 45.9%, 2.1 percentage points below the seasonally adjusted December reading of 48%.

Inventories of raw materials remained flat at 43.5%, the same reading as in December, as did prices, with the Prices Index staying level at 33.5%. Prices for raw materials have now fallen for the 15 consecutive months.

 

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