Richmond Fed Index: It's Over
Manufacturing activity in the central Atlantic region expanded for the fifth straight month in September, according to the Richmond Fed’s latest survey. All broad indicators—shipments, new orders and employment—landed in positive territory, with manufacturers noting their first increase in worker numbers since December 2007. Other indicators were mixed, however. Capacity utilization grew more slowly, while backlogs and vendor delivery times shrank. In addition, manufacturers reported slower growth in inventories.
Looking ahead, assessments for business prospects for the next six months were also generally more positive. Contacts at more firms anticipated that their new orders, backlogs, capacity utilization and capital expenditures would grow more quickly in the months ahead than they expected in August.
MP: The Richmond Fed Index been in positive territory for five consecutive months for the first time in three years (since April to September 2006).