Monday, August 26, 2019

Dallas Fed: "Texas Manufacturing Expansion Picks Up Pace"

by Calculated Risk on 8/26/2019 10:35:00 AM

From the Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Expansion Picks Up Pace

Texas factory activity expanded at a faster clip in August, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, shot up nine points to 17.9, its highest reading in nearly a year.

Other measures of manufacturing activity also suggested faster expansion in August. The shipments index rose seven points to 17.6, and the capacity utilization index rose five points to 15.7, both reaching 11-month highs. The new orders index moved up from 5.5 to 9.3, while the growth rate of orders index was largely unchanged at 1.8.

Perceptions of broader business conditions improved in August. The general business activity index pushed into positive territory for the first time in four months, rising nine points to 2.7. Similarly, the company outlook index rose to 5.0 following three months in negative territory. However, the index measuring uncertainty regarding companies’ outlooks jumped nine points to 18.6, a reading well above average.

Labor market measures suggested slower growth in employment and work hours in August. The employment index remained positive but retreated 11 points to 5.5, a level closer to average. Eighteen percent of firms noted net hiring, while 12 percent noted net layoffs. The hours worked index edged down to 4.0.
emphasis added
Some improvement, but another weak regional report.