Friday, March 17, 2017

Industrial Production unchanged in February

by Bill McBride on 3/17/2017 09:24:00 AM

From the Fed: Industrial production and Capacity Utilization

Industrial production was unchanged in February following a 0.1 percent decrease in January. In February, manufacturing output moved up 0.5 percent for its sixth consecutive monthly increase. Mining output jumped 2.7 percent, but the index for utilities fell 5.7 percent, as continued unseasonably warm weather further reduced demand for heating. At 104.7 percent of its 2012 average, total industrial production in February was 0.3 percent above its level of a year earlier. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector declined 0.1 percentage point in February to 75.4 percent, a rate that is 4.5 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2016) average.
emphasis added
Capacity Utilization Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows Capacity Utilization. This series is up 8.7 percentage points from the record low set in June 2009 (the series starts in 1967).

Capacity utilization at 75.4% is 4.5% below the average from 1972 to 2015 and below the pre-recession level of 80.8% in December 2007.

Note: y-axis doesn't start at zero to better show the change.

Industrial Production The second graph shows industrial production since 1967.

Industrial production was unchanged in February at 104.7. This is 19.8% above the recession low, and is close to the pre-recession peak.

This was below expectations of a 0.2% increase, but January was revised up.