Thursday, May 23, 2013

Kansas City Fed: Regional Manufacturing expanded in May

by Calculated Risk on 5/23/2013 11:47:00 AM

From the Kansas City Fed: Tenth District Manufacturing Survey Improved Somewhat

The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City released the May Manufacturing Survey today. According to Chad Wilkerson, vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the survey revealed that Tenth District manufacturing activity improved somewhat, rising above zero for the first time in seven months, and producers’ expectations for future activity also increased.

“It was good to finally see a positive number after seven months of modest declines, and for optimism about future activity to return after dropping last month,” said Wilkerson. “Still, activity remains at only about year-ago levels and firms are having difficulty passing cost increases through.”

The month-over-month composite index was 2 in May, up from -5 in both April and March. ... Other month-over-month indexes were mixed. The production index edged up from 1 to 5, and the shipments, new orders, and new orders for export indexes also rose. In contrast, the employment index fell from -3 to -7, while the order backlog index was unchanged.
The last regional surveys for May will be released next Tuesday (Dallas and Richmond), and the ISM index for May will be released on Monday, June 1st. Based on the regional surveys released so far, and the Markit Flash PMI released this morning, I expect a fairly weak reading for the ISM index (perhaps at or below 50).