Empire State Index: Positive Reading for 8th Month
The Empire State Manufacturing Survey was released today and indicates that conditions for New York manufacturers continued to improve at a steady pace in March. Highlights include:
1. The General Business Conditions Index posted its eighth consecutive positive reading in March, following 15 consecutive months of negative readings (see chart). The General Business Index, at 22.9, remained close to its February level, with 43% of respondents reporting that conditions had improved over the month and 20% reporting that conditions had worsened. The new orders index shot up 17 points to 25.4, indicating that the pace at which orders were being placed had quickened significantly over the month.
2. Employment indexes climbed, suggesting that employment is continuing to expand. The index for number of employees advanced 7 points to 12.4, its highest level in more than two years, with 20% of respondents indicating that employment levels had risen in March and just 7% indicating that employment had fallen.
3. Future indexes strongly suggested that New York manufacturers expect conditions to improve further in the months ahead. The Future General Business Conditions Index rose to 54.3, with 64 percent of respondents anticipating better conditions over the next six months (see chart).
MP: "It's beginning to look a lot like recovery...."