April Empire State Index Close to 4-Year High
The Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that conditions for New York State manufacturers improved at a rapid pace in April. The general business conditions index rose 9 points, to 31.9 (see chart above). The new orders and shipments indexes advanced as well, and the inventories index climbed to a record high. The prices paid index moved up 12 points to 41.8, its highest level in considerably more than a year, while the prices received index held fairly steady at a level just above zero. Employment indexes rose to high levels, suggesting that employment levels are continuing to improve. Future indexes conveyed an ongoing sense of optimism about the six-month outlook.
Future indexes again conveyed a high level of optimism about the next six months. The future general business conditions index rose slightly, to 55.7, adhering to its relatively high levels of the past several months (see chart).MP: The readings of 31.9 in April and 33.4 last October are the first times the Empire Index has been above 33.0 since March 2006. The index has now been positive for the last nine months, following 15 straight months of negative readings.