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The manufacturing sector expanded in January, and the overall economy grew for the 92nd consecutive month, according to supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business. The January PMI was 56 percent, an increase of 1.5 percentage points from the December reading.
The New Orders Index registered 60.4 percent, an increase of 0.1 percentage point from the seasonally adjusted December reading of 60.3 percent. The Production Index registered 61.4 percent, 2 percentage points higher than the seasonally adjusted December reading of 59.4 percent. The Employment Index registered 56.1 percent, an increase of 3.3 percentage points from the seasonally adjusted December reading of 52.8 percent. Inventories of raw materials registered 48.5 percent, an increase of 1.5 percentage points from the December reading of 47 percent. The Prices Index registered 69 percent in January, an increase of 3.5 percentage points from the December reading of 65.5 percent, indicating higher raw materials prices for the 11th consecutive month.
A reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50 percent indicates that it is generally contracting. The PMI, New Orders, Production and Employment Indexes all registered their highest levels since November of 2014, and comments from the panel are generally positive regarding demand levels and business conditions.
Of the 18 manufacturing industries, 12 reported growth in January in the following order: Plastics & Rubber Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Paper Products; Chemical Products; Transportation Equipment; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Machinery; Petroleum & Coal Products; Primary Metals; Fabricated Metal Products; and Computer & Electronic Products. The five industries reporting contraction in January are: Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Wood Products; Furniture & Related Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; and Printing & Related Support Activities.
For more information, visit www.ism.ws.