The 2020 Mid-Year Economic Update_long

Advance Report: New Orders for Durable Goods Up 3.4% in January

Increase of manufactured durable goods is the ninth in a row since May 2020; this growth period was preceded by two decreases during the height of the coronavirus crisis.
durable goods January 2021

New orders for manufactured durable goods in January increased $8.5 billion, or 3.4%, to $256.6 billion, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

This increase, up nine consecutive months, followed a 1.2% December increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 1.4%. Excluding defense, new orders increased 2.3%. Transportation, up eight of the last nine months, drove the increase, $6.1 billion or 7.8% to $85.1 billion.

Shipments

Shipments of manufactured durable goods in January, up eight of the last nine months, increased $5.1 billion or 2% to $260.6 billion. This followed a 2.1% December increase. Machinery, also up eight of the last nine months, led the increase, $1.1 billion or 3.6% to $33.2 billion.

Unfilled Orders

Unfilled orders for manufactured durable goods in January, up following seven consecutive monthly decreases, increased $1 billion or 0.1% to $1,072.6 billion. This followed a 0.2% December decrease. Fabricated metal products, up nine consecutive months, led the increase, $0.9 billion or 1.2% to $78.6 billion.

Inventories

Inventories of manufactured durable goods in January, down two consecutive months, decreased $1.4 billion or 0.3% to $424.3 billion. This followed a 0.2% December decrease. Transportation equipment, also down two consecutive months, drove the decrease, $2.3 billion or 1.5% to $145.7 billion.

Capital Goods

Nondefense new orders for capital goods in January increased $4.6 billion or 6.5% to $75.6 billion. Shipments increased $2.6 billion or 3.5% to $77.1 billion. Unfilled orders decreased $1.5 billion or 0.3% to $586.8 billion. Inventories decreased $2.6 billion or 1.4% to $191.7 billion. Defense new orders for capital goods in January increased $2.5 billion or 20.2% to $14.8 billion. Shipments increased $0.4 billion or 2.8% to $13.2 billion. Unfilled orders increased $1.6 billion or 0.9% to $179.6 billion. Inventories increased $0.2 billion or 0.8% to $21.2 billion.

Revised December Data

Revised seasonally adjusted December figures for all manufacturing industries were: new orders, $496.1 billion (revised from $493.5 billion); shipments, $503.6 billion (revised from $501.8 billion); unfilled orders, $1,071.6 billion (revised from $1,070.8 billion) and total inventories, $695.8 billion (revised from $695.7 billion).

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