Manufacturing contracted again in March for the 14th consecutive month, according to the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business.
The Institute for Supply Management report read: "The rapid decline in manufacturing appears to have moderated somewhat, as the PMI remains in the mid-30s for a third consecutive month. While the PMI is slightly higher in March, the New Orders Index offers greater encouragement, as it rose above the 40-percent mark for the first time in seven months.
"The Production Index showed no benefit as yet from the improvement in new orders, as it continued to decline at a rate similar to March. The rate of decline in the Employment Index slowed slightly, and the same held true for the Prices Index. A special question was asked with regard to the Economic Stimulus Package, and five of the 18 manufacturing industries expect to derive some benefit from the stimulus." (See more on this in the MDM Blog.)
None of the 18 manufacturing industries reported growth in March.