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Monday, March 26, 2012

Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Expansion Continues in March

by Calculated Risk on 3/26/2012 06:40:00 PM

This was released earlier today.

From the Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Expansion Continues

Texas factory activity continued to increase in March, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, held steady at 11.1, suggesting growth continued at about the same pace as last month.
Perceptions of broader economic conditions remained positive in March. The general business activity index was positive for the third month in a row, although it fell from 17.8 to 10.8. Twenty-three percent of firms noted improvement in the level of business activity, while 12 percent noted a worsening. The company outlook index posted a sixth consecutive positive reading, but it also retreated slightly, falling to 9.5 from 15.8 last month.

Labor market indicators reflected higher labor demand. Strong employment growth continued in March, although the index edged down from 25.2 to 21.7. Twenty-nine percent of firms reported hiring new workers, while 7 percent reported layoffs. The hours worked index continued to suggest average workweeks lengthened.
The Dallas Fed asked some special questions on hiring plans too. The survey indicated that more firms expect to hire over the next six months as opposed to the previous special survey in January 2011. The reason given for hiring is "Expected growth of sales or revenue is high". More demand.