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Thursday, March 01, 2012

ISM Manufacturing index indicates slower expansion in February

by Calculated Risk on 3/01/2012 10:00:00 AM

PMI was at 52.4% in February, down from 54.1% in January. The employment index was at 53.2%, down from 54.3%, and new orders index was at 54.9%, down from 57.6%.

From the Institute for Supply Management: January 2012 Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in February for the 31st consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 33rd consecutive month, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®.

The report was issued today by Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, chair of the Institute for Supply Management™ Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. "The PMI registered 52.4 percent, a decrease of 1.7 percentage points from January's reading of 54.1 percent, indicating expansion in the manufacturing sector for the 31st consecutive month. The New Orders Index registered 54.9 percent, a decrease of 2.7 percentage points from January's reading of 57.6 percent, reflecting the 34th consecutive month of growth in new orders. Prices of raw materials increased for the second consecutive month, with the Prices Index registering 61.5 percent. As was the case in January, new orders, production and employment all grew in February — although at somewhat slower rates than in January. Comments from the panel continue to reflect a generally positive outlook for the next few months."
ISM PMIClick on graph for larger image.

Here is a long term graph of the ISM manufacturing index.

This was below expectations of 54.6%. This suggests manufacturing expanded at a slower rate in February than in January (the opposite of all the regional surveys). It appears manufacturing employment expanded slowly in February with the employment index at 53.2%.