Friday, March 15, 2019

Industrial Production Increased 0.1% in February

by Bill McBride on 3/15/2019 09:21:00 AM

From the Fed: Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization

Industrial production edged up 0.1 percent in February after decreasing 0.4 percent in January. Manufacturing production fell 0.4 percent in February for its second consecutive monthly decline. The index for utilities rose 3.7 percent, while the index for mining moved up 0.3 percent. At 109.7 percent of its 2012 average, total industrial production was 3.5 percent higher in February than it was a year earlier. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector edged down 0.1 percentage point in February to 78.2 percent, a rate that is 1.6 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2018) average.
emphasis added
Capacity Utilization Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows Capacity Utilization. This series is up 11.5 percentage points from the record low set in June 2009 (the series starts in 1967).

Capacity utilization at 78.2% is 1.6% below the average from 1972 to 2017 and below the pre-recession level of 80.8% in December 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 increased in February to 109.7. This is 26% above the recession low, and 4.1% above the pre-recession peak.

The increase in industrial production and decrease in capacity utilization were below consensus.