Of the five regional surveys released to date for February, three show manufacturing expansion.
GROWTH IN TENTH DISTRICT MANUFACTURING WAS SLIGHTLY POSITIVE
The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City released the February Manufacturing Survey today. According to Chad Wilkerson, vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the survey revealed that growth in Tenth District manufacturing activity was slightly positive, and although producers’ expectations moderated somewhat they remained at solid levels overall.
“The story in February was similar to January. Regional factory activity was held back somewhat by unusually harsh weather, but still managed to grow modestly.”
TENTH DISTRICT MANUFACTURING SUMMARY
Growth in Tenth District manufacturing activity was slightly positive in February, and although producers’ expectations moderated somewhat they remained at solid levels overall. Several contacts continued to cite delays and slowdowns caused by severe winter weather issues. Price indexes were mostly stable or slightly lower.
The month-over-month composite index was 4 in February, similar to the reading of 5 in January and up from -3 in December (Tables 1 & 2, Chart). The composite index is an average of the production, new orders, employment, supplier delivery time, and raw materials inventory indexes. Manufacturing activity declined at non-durable goodsproducing plants, particularly food and beverage, while production of durable goods products increased slightly. Other month-over-month indexes were mixed. The production index jumped from -8 to 3, and the shipments index also climbed higher. The order backlog and employment indexes decreased slightly, while the new orders index was unchanged. The raw materials inventory index increased for the second straight month, while the finished goods inventory index remained flat.
Most year-over-year factory indexes were relatively unchanged from last month. The composite year-over-year index remained stable at 8, while the production, shipments, and order backlog indexes inched higher. The new orders, employment, and capital expenditures indexes were mostly unchanged. The new orders for exports index fell back into negative territory, while both inventory indexes posted levels similar to last month.
Future factory indexes eased slightly from the historical highs reached in January but remained solid overall. The future composite index decreased from 26 to 11, and the future production, shipments, and new orders indexes also fell. The future employment index dropped from 29 to 6, and the future order backlog index edged lower. The future capital expenditures index eased from 26 to 24, and the future new orders for exports index moderated slightly. The future raw materials inventory index moved into negative territory, while the future finished good inventory index posted a positive number for the first time in five months.
Price indexes were mostly down or relatively stable in February. The month-over-month raw materials price index edged down from 19 to 16, while the finished goods price index was relatively unchanged. The year-over-year raw materials index fell slightly, while the finished goods price index was flat. The future raw materials price index decreased from 47 to 35, and the future finished goods price index also eased somewhat, indicating fewer firms plan to pass recent cost increases through to customers.
Summary of all Federal Reserve Districts Manufacturing:
Richmond Fed (hyperlink to reports):
Kansas Fed (hyperlink to reports):
Dallas Fed (hyperlink to reports):
Philly Fed (hyperlink to reports):
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New York Fed (hyperlink to reports):
Federal Reserve Industrial Production – Actual Data (hyperlink to report)
Holding this and other survey’s Econintersect follows accountable for their predictions, the following graph compares the hard data from Industrial Products manufacturing subindex (dark blue bar) and US Census manufacturing shipments (lighter blue bar) to the Kansas City Survey (pea-green bar).
Comparing Surveys to Hard Data
In the above graphic, hard data is the long bars, and surveys are the short bars. The arrows on the left side are the key to growth or contraction.
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