Daily News: November 2, 2012

ISM: Manufacturing Sector Expands in October


Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in October for the second consecutive month following three months of slight contraction, and the overall economy grew for the 41st consecutive month, according to the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business.

The PMI registered 51.7%, an increase of 0.2 percentage point from September’s reading of 51.5%, indicating growth in manufacturing at a slightly faster rate, said Bradley J. Holcomb, chair of the Institute for Supply Management Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

A reading above 50% indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50% indicates that it is generally contracting.

The New Orders Index registered 54.2%, an increase of 1.9 percentage points from September, indicating growth in new orders for the second consecutive month. The Production Index registered 52.4%, an increase of 2.9 percentage points, indicating growth in production following two months of contraction. The Employment Index registered 52.1%, a decrease of 2.6 percentage points, and the Prices Index registered 55%, reflecting a decrease of 3 percentage points.

Comments from the panel this month reflect continued concern over a fragile global economy and soft orders across several manufacturing sectors.

Of the 18 manufacturing industries, eight are reporting growth in October in the following order: Petroleum & Coal Products; Furniture & Related Products; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Paper Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; and Chemical Products.

The eight industries reporting contraction in October