Wednesday, August 20th22.0°C
22938
22285

Orders for US manufactured goods jumped 2.2 per cent in February, but a key category weakened

WASHINGTON - Orders to U.S. factories for long-lasting manufactured goods rose in February by the most in three months, but a key category that reflects business investment fell sharply. This category fell 1.3 per cent, the second setback in three months.

Economists said the weakness in business investment might reflect the severe winter, which led some industries to put modernization and expansion plans on hold.

Overall orders for durable goods rose 2.2 per cent after a 1.3 per cent drop in January, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. The February increase was driven by a surge in orders for commercial aircraft, a category that tends to fluctuate sharply from month to month.

Joel Naroff, chief economists at Naroff Economic Advisors, said he expected economic growth to slow sharply in the January-March quarter, reflecting the disruptions caused by the harsh weather, before recovering in coming months.

"The rebound could be huge once spring actually appears," Naroff said.

A 13.6 per cent jump in demand for commercial aircraft followed a 22.1 per cent plunge in the previous month. Orders for motor vehicles and parts showed a solid gain of 3.6 per cent in February after a 1.9 per cent fall in January.

Demand also rose for primary metals such as steel. Orders for machinery fell 1.5 per cent. Demand for computers fell 0.5 per cent and for communications equipment 2.7 per cent.

Many economists think manufacturing output will strengthen in spring, reflecting better weather after winter storms disrupted production at some factories.

The Institute for Supply Management's gauge of manufacturing activity expanded faster in February as companies received more orders and boosted their stockpiles. Its manufacturing index rose to 53.2 in February from 51.3 in January. That only partially reversed a 5-point drop in January. Any reading above 50 indicates that manufacturing is expanding.

The ISM index had risen for six straight months until falling slightly in December and taking a big tumble in January as heavy snow caused factories to close.

The bad weather depressed purchases of homes and autos, causing factories to trim their production schedules for autos, furniture and appliances in January. But the Federal Reserve said factory output rebounded in February by the largest amount in six months.

Analysts estimate that the economy slowed to an annual growth rate below 2 per cent in the January-March period. But they're forecasting that the growth rate will rebound to around 3 per cent for the rest of the year. If that occurs, it would be the fastest annual economic growth since 2005.

The Canadian Press


Read more Business News




Recent Trending




Today's Market
S&P TSX15516.14+38.97
S&P CDNX996.38-1.18
DJIA16940.4720.88
Nasdaq4521.931-5.583
S&P 5001982.48+0.88
CDN Dollar0.9116-0.0027
Gold1290.00-5.10
Oil95.33+0.85
Lumber352.90+0.30
Natural Gas3.821-0.056

 
Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.185-0.005
Knighthawk0.01-0.005
QHR Technologies Inc1.22+0.02
Cantex0.065-0.005
Anavex Life Sciences0.261+0.001
Metalex Ventures0.0850.00
Russel Metals37.33+0.11
Copper Mountain Mining2.88+0.11
Colorado Resources0.18+0.01
ReliaBrand Inc0.085+0.008
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.025-0.005
Mission Ready Services0.24+0.04

 



21097

FEATURED Property
2022286#123-2220 Shannon Ridge Drive
3 bedrooms 3 baths
$450,000
more details
image2image2image2
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading


Cost of an Injury Lawyer

Let’s face it; nobody wants to pay for legal services if they do not have to, but if you have been injured in an accident you may have thought about hiring a lawyer to help you navigate your cla...


Going home to a bully!

Finally, after three months in New Brunswick, I am back home in the sunny Okanagan. It is a delight to be home and the lake, vistas, people and climate never disappoint. Like many people however, I...


Managing a business in 40 hours a week

My screen printing business, like many others, started as a one-man operation. It was located in a small building, not much better than a shack, with a telephone, a big table where I ate lunch and (oc...

_








Member of BC Press Council


22814