ISM Manufacturing Better-than-Expected


Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded last month, according to the Institute for Supply Management's survey. PMI registered 51.7% for October, which was ahead of expectations. A reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding.

October marked the second straight month above the 50% line. PMI had shown 34 consecutive months of expansion until June, when it dropped below 50% for three consecutive months. But it now appears that this was only a temporary slowdown.

Within this month's report, the New Orders Index improved to 54.2, up from 52.3 in September. Production registered 52.4, which was up from 49.5 last month. But the Employment segment declined 2.6 points to 52.1.

All in all, this was a solid report. And it adds to the recent data suggesting that the U.S. economy continues to at least slowly grow.

Zacks Investment Research

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