Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Empire Index Shows High Level of Optimism

The New York Federal Reserve reported today that "the Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that conditions for New York manufacturers improved in January. The general business conditions index rose 2 points to 11.9 (see chart above). The new orders index moved up 10 points to 12.4, and the shipments index surged 18 points to 25.4. After a sharp decline last month, the inventories index rose above zero. Employment indexes also climbed into positive territory. Both the prices paid and prices received indexes rose, pointing to an acceleration in both input prices and selling prices. 

Future indexes conveyed a high level of optimism, with the future general business conditions index advancing to a level not seen since early 2010, while future price indexes climbed to multiyear highs. Future indexes were at relatively high levels, suggesting that manufacturers widely expected conditions to continue improving over the next six months. The future general business conditions index rose 10 points to 59.0, with 61 percent of respondents expecting conditions to be better in six months."
MP: Actually, according to the New York Fed's historical data, the Future Conditions Index in January at 58.95 was the highest level since early 2004 (see chart above). 


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