Of the four Federal Reserve districts which have released their November manufacturing surveys, all are forecasting growth. A complete summary follows. [note that values above zero represent expansion].

The market was expecting 8.0 to 12.0 (consensus 9.0) versus the actual of 6.0.

Texas factory activity increased again in November, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, fell from 13.7 to 6, indicating output growth slowed in November.

Other measures of current manufacturing activity also reflected slower growth during the month. The capacity utilization index fell sharply from 18.1 to 9.8. The new orders index also declined notably from 14.2 to 5.6, although more than a quarter of firms continued to note increases in new orders over October levels. The shipments index was 12.1, nearly unchanged from its October reading.

Perceptions of broader business conditions remained positive this month, while outlooks were less optimistic. The general business activity index held steady at a solid reading of 10.5. The company outlook index dropped from 18.2 to 8.8, due to a smaller share of firms noting an improved outlook in November than in October.

Labor market indicators reflected continued employment growth and longer workweeks. The November employment index posted a sixth robust reading, coming in at 9.6. Twenty-one percent of firms reported net hiring, compared with 11 percent reporting net layoffs. The hours worked index slipped from 8.3 to 5.7, indicating a smaller increase in hours worked than last month.

Upward pressures on wages and prices were mixed. The raw materials prices index fell from 19.7 to 15.3, its lowest reading in seven months. The finished goods prices index edged up from 7.1 to 9.7. The wages and benefits index was little changed, at a reading of 23.9, with 76 percent of manufacturers noting no change in wages and benefits this month.

Expectations regarding future business conditions remained optimistic in November. The index of future general business activity rose 5 points to 18.3, while the index of future company outlook held steady at 23.1. Indexes for future manufacturing activity held steady or improved in November.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email