U.S. Industrial Production Makes Biggest Jump in 10 Months - Modern Distribution Management

Log In

U.S. Industrial Production Makes Biggest Jump in 10 Months

It far surpassed economists’ expectations and followed two straight flat months.
American Flag flying in front of manufacturing factory

U.S. industrial production saw a major jump during May following two straight flat months, matching a 10-month high set in July of last year.

The Federal Reserve’s latest Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization Report showed that production increased 0.9% in May month-to-month, far surpassing expectations of a 0.4% gain from economists surveyed by the Wall Street Journal.

U.S. Industrial Production Index – Month-to-Month

source: tradingeconomics.com 

At 103.3% of its 2017 average, total industrial production in May was up 0.4% year-over-year. Capacity utilization moved up 0.5% from April to 78.7%, which was up 1.4% year-over-year.

April’s total index of 102.8% of its 2017 average was dragged down by a 0.3% month-to-month decline in manufacturing and a 0.6% drop in the index for mining, while utilities jumped 2.8%.

Year-over-year, total industrial production fell 0.4%, likewise hampered by a 0.5% slide in manufacturing and 1.3% drop in mining, while utilities jumped 2.3%.

Total U.S. capacity utilization dipped 0.1% in April month-to-month to 78.4% of its long-run (1972-2023) average, but improved 1.4% year-over-year. Capacity utilization for manufacturing moved down 0.3 percentage points in April to 76.9%, a rate that was 1.3 points below its long-run average. 

Market Groups

May’s monthly gains were widespread across major market groups:

  • The index for consumer goods rose 1.3%, with increases in all of its components except for home electronics
  • Business equipment posted a small 0.2% gain as a decrease in its transit component was outweighed by gains in the information processing component and in the industrial and other component
  • The index for defense and space equipment rose 1.0% and was nearly 10% above its year-earlier level
  • The materials index increased 0.8%, as subindexes for non-energy durables and non-energy nondurables each increased about 1%, while energy materials rose 0.6%

Industry Groups

May’s manufacturing output increased 0.9% month-to-month and was up 0.1% year-over-year. The index for durable manufacturing rose 0.6% month-to-month, while the index for nondurable manufacturing jumped 1.1% and the index for other manufacturing (publishing and logging) moved up 0.2%.

Most industry groups within durable manufacturing posted monthly gains in May. They were led by the indexes for wood products (+2.6%), machinery (+2.3%) and computer and electronic products (+0.8%).

Mining output increased 0.3% in May month-to-month after declining in April and March and was down -0.4% year-over-year. The output of utilities increased 1.6% during May and was up 3.9% year-over-year.

Related Posts

Share this article

About the Author
Recommended Reading
Leave a Reply

Leave a Comment

Sign Up for the MDM Update Newsletter

The MDM update newsletter is your best source for news and trends in the wholesale distribution industry.

Get the MDM Update Newsletter

Wholesale distribution news and trends delivered right to your inbox.

Sign-up for our free newsletter and get:

  • Up-to-date news in a quick-to-read format
  • Free access to webcasts, podcasts and live events
  • Exclusive whitepapers, research and reports
  • And more!


articles left

Want more Premium content from MDM?

Subscribe today and get:

  • New issues twice each month
  • Unlimited access to mdm.com, including 10+ years of archived data
  • Current trends analysis, market data and economic updates
  • Discounts on select store products and events

Subscribe to continue reading

MDM Premium Subscribers get:

  • Unlimited access to MDM.com
  • 1 year digital subscription, with new issues twice a month
  • Trends analysis, market data and quarterly economic updates
  • Deals on select store products and events



You have one free article remaining

Subscribe to MDM Premium to get unlimited access. Your subscription includes:

  • Two new issues a month
  • Access to 10+ years of archived data on mdm.com
  • Quarterly economic updates, trends analysis and market data
  • Store and event discounts

To continue reading, you must be an MDM Premium subscriber.

Join other distribution executives who use MDM Premium to optimize their business. Our insights and analysis help you enter the right new markets, turbocharge your sales and marketing efforts, identify business partners that help you scale, and stay ahead of your competitors.

Register for full access

By providing your email, you agree to receive announcements from us and our partners for our newsletter, events, surveys, and partner resources per MDM Terms & Conditions. You can withdraw consent at any time.

Learn More about Custom Reports

Request a Market Prospector Demo

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.