Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Richmond Fed: "Fifth District Manufacturing Firms Reported Strong Growth in August"

by Bill McBride on 8/28/2018 10:05:00 AM

From the Richmond Fed: Fifth District Manufacturing Firms Reported Strong Growth in August

Fifth District manufacturing activity expanded in August, according to results of the most recent survey from the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. The composite index rose from 20 in July to 24 in August, as all three components (shipments, new orders, and employment) increased. Respondents remained optimistic in August, expecting growth to continue in the coming months.

Employment and wages continued to rise, yet manufacturing firms continued to struggle to find workers with the skills they needed, as this indicator dropped to −17, its lowest value on record.
emphasis added
This was the last of the regional Fed surveys for August.

Here is a graph comparing the regional Fed surveys and the ISM manufacturing index:

Fed Manufacturing Surveys and ISM PMI Click on graph for larger image.

The New York and Philly Fed surveys are averaged together (yellow, through August), and five Fed surveys are averaged (blue, through August) including New York, Philly, Richmond, Dallas and Kansas City. The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) PMI (red) is through July (right axis).

Based on these regional surveys, it seems likely the ISM manufacturing index will be solid in August, but below 60 (to be released on Tuesday, September 4th).