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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

Survey: Manufacturers Optimistic Despite Stronger Dollar

April 7, 2015 1:47 pm | by Andy Szal, Digital Reporter | News | Comments

The survey showed a lack of qualified workers as the leading manufacturing headwind — 35 percent of respondents identified that problem — followed closely by legislative or regulatory pressures at 33 percent and lack of demand at 29 percent.

U.S. Factory Orders Rose For First Time Since July

April 2, 2015 10:36 am | by Paul Wiseman, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Factory orders rose 0.2 percent in February, which was the first increase since July, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. The climb was a welcome development for manufacturers struggling with disappointing economic growth in major trading partners like China, Europe and Japan.

Applications For U.S. Jobless Aid Drop Significantly

April 2, 2015 10:30 am | by Josh Boak, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Applications below 300,000 are generally consistent with solid monthly job gains. Layoffs have stayed close to historic lows, despite a pronounced economic slowdown in recent months.


U.S. Trade Deficit Plunges 16.9 Percent In February

April 2, 2015 9:58 am | by Josh Boak, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The U.S. trade deficit plunged in February as both imports and exports sank, driven by a since-settled trade dispute and a global economic slowdown that has cut into oil prices and caused the dollar to rise in value.

U.S. Manufacturing Slows As Orders, Hiring Weaken

April 1, 2015 3:11 pm | by Josh Boak, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchasing managers, says its manufacturing index slipped to 51.5 in March from 52.9 in February. It was the fifth straight drop. Still, any reading above 50 signals expansion.

Surveys: China Manufacturing Weak In March

April 1, 2015 3:04 pm | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Beijing has cut interest rates twice since November to spur economic growth that fell to 7.3 percent in the final quarter of last year, fueling fears of a politically dangerous spike in job losses.

U.S. Auto Sales Tap The Brakes In March, But Outlook Strong

April 1, 2015 2:58 pm | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

March sales were expected to be flat compared with last March. Car buying site predicted total U.S. sales of 1.5 million vehicles in March, down less than 1 percent from a year ago.

Survey: U.S. Businesses Add 189K Jobs In March

April 1, 2015 9:56 am | by Josh Boak, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Manufacturers shed 1,000 jobs in March, which likely reflects the twin drags of falling oil prices and a stronger dollar.


Business Forecasters Boost 2-year Outlook For U.S. Economy

March 30, 2015 1:33 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The March report from the National Association for Business Economics forecasts more hiring, a lower unemployment rate, a lower inflation rate and more growth in consumer spending in 2015.

Fewer Americans Filed For Unemployment Benefits Last Week

March 26, 2015 9:47 am | by Josh Boak, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Applications are a proxy for layoffs. The relatively low average shows that employers are holding onto workers and may increase hiring.

U.S. Durable Goods Orders Fell 1.4 Percent In February

March 25, 2015 10:25 am | by Martin Crustinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist at Capital Economics, blamed some of the weakness to the big plunge in energy prices, which has led to cutbacks in drilling plans by oil and gas companies.

Eurozone Stimulus Boosts Manufacturing

March 24, 2015 1:31 pm | by Pan Pylas, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The economy across the 19-country eurozone appears to be gaining momentum as a closely-watched survey Tuesday found business activity hit a near four-year high in March.

Report: China Manufacturing At Lowest In Nearly A Year

March 24, 2015 12:07 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The numbers signaled a "slight deterioration" in Chinese manufacturing, said the report, which found decreases in sub-indexes for new orders, new export orders and employment.


Gauge Of U.S. Economy Up Modest 0.2 Percent In February

March 19, 2015 6:11 pm | by Martin Crutsinger, The AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The three indicators which subtracted from growth were weekly unemployment benefit applications, weekly manufacturing hours and the index for new orders tracked by the Institute for Supply Management.       

Manufacturing In Philly Area Grows At Slightly Slower Pace

March 19, 2015 2:50 pm | by Christopher Rugaber, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Economists partly blame the strong dollar, which makes U.S. exports overseas more expensive. It also makes imports cheaper, potentially undercutting U.S. goods.              

Applications For U.S. Jobless Aid Barely Rose Last Week

March 19, 2015 9:50 am | by Josh Boak, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for unemployment aid rose slightly by 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 291,000.                  

U.S. Current Account Trade Deficit Widens To $113.5 Billion

March 19, 2015 9:35 am | by Martin Crustinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

A widening trade deficit contributed to the slowdown in overall economic growth in the fourth quarter and is expected to be a drag on growth in 2015 as the stronger dollar makes American products less competitive on overseas markets. 

Industrial Output Edged Up In February

March 16, 2015 10:33 am | by Martin Crustinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The 7.3 percent surge in utility output reflected unusually cold weather in many parts of the country.                         

NY Manufacturing Index Slows In March

March 16, 2015 9:55 am | by Martin Crustinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York said Monday that that its Empire State manufacturing index slipped to 6.9 in March from a reading of 7.8 in February.                

The Dollar Is Making A Comeback

March 13, 2015 10:37 am | by Maura Falk, Associate Editor | Videos | Comments

The dollar is at its highest value of $1.05 against the euro in 12 years.                                                                                                                                                                

State Economy Paying The Price For Tax Plan Intended To Save Business

March 11, 2015 2:11 pm | by David Eggert, The Associated Press | News | Comments

On a Tuesday morning in October 2010, a beaming Gov. Jennifer Granholm and executives of the Detroit Three automakers walked into a meeting of Michigan's economic development board to announce the final pieces of an agreement to head off thousands of company...

U.S. Wholesale Stockpiles Increase, Sales Sink In January

March 11, 2015 1:09 pm | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

U.S. wholesale businesses increased their stockpiles by a modest amount in January as sales plunged by the largest amount in six years. Stockpiles held by wholesale businesses rose 0.3 percent in January after no change in December and a 0.8 percent November...

Good News For Some Of Us: Other People Are Quitting Jobs

March 10, 2015 6:07 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Quitting your job — all but unheard of during and after the Great Recession — is becoming more common again. That could mean pay raises are coming for more Americans. The trend has already emerged in the restaurant and retail industries, where quits and pay are rising faster...

China's Auto Sales Growth Decelerates In February

March 10, 2015 6:17 am | by Joe Mcdonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

China's auto sales growth decelerated in February despite a near doubling in purchases of Chinese-made SUVs, an industry group reported Tuesday. Sales in world's biggest auto market rose 6.4 percent to 1.4 million vehicles, according to the China Association of Automobile...

Epic Snows Have Meant Economic Woes Across All Industries

March 7, 2015 1:13 pm | by Philip Marcelo, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Ignore anyone who tells you snow is free. Every work day lost during New England's historic winter has meant millions of dollars taken out of the regional economy. IHS Global Insight, an economic analysis firm, estimates Massachusetts alone suffered roughly $1 billion in lost wages and profits, as storm after storm...

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