Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Industrial Production, Capacity Utilization decrease slightly in January

by Calculated Risk on 2/16/2011 09:15:00 AM

From the Fed: Industrial production and Capacity Utilization

Industrial production decreased 0.1 percent in January 2011 after having risen 1.2 percent in December. In the manufacturing sector, output increased 0.3 percent in January after an upwardly revised gain of 0.9 percent in December. Excluding motor vehicles and parts, factory production rose 0.1 percent in January. The output of utilities fell 1.6 percent in January, as temperatures moved closer to normal after unseasonably cold weather boosted the demand for heating in December; the output of utilities advanced 4.1 percent in that month. In January, the output of mines declined 0.7 percent. At 95.1 percent of its 2007 average, total industrial production in January was 5.2 percent above its level of a year earlier. The capacity utilization rate for total industry edged down to 76.1 percent, a rate 4.4 percentage points below its average from 1972 to 2010.
Capacity Utilization Click on graph for larger image in new window.

This graph shows Capacity Utilization. This series is up 7.9 percentage points from the record low set in June 2009 (the series starts in 1967).

Capacity utilization at 76.1% is still far below normal - and well below the pre-recession levels of 81.2% in November 2007.

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

Industrial ProductionThe second graph shows industrial production since 1967.

Industrial production decreased in January due to a decline in utilities. Production is still 5.6% below the pre-recession levels at the end of 2007.

The decline was a combination of an upward revision to December and less demand for heating in January.