WASHINGTON – June new orders for durable goods increased 1.4 percent to $217.1 billion, its highest level in three months, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Shipments continued a three-month trend and decreased 1.1 percent to $212.5 billion.
Unfilled orders rose 1.5 percent to $736.5 billion, and inventories inched up 0.2 percent to $313.4 billion, pushing both to their highest levels since the survey began.
Nondefense new orders for capital goods increased 4.6 percent to $76.2 billion.
Defense new orders for capital goods dropped 13.9 percent to $7 billion.
“Durable goods orders increased 1.4 percent in June largely due to a surge in commercial aircraft orders,“ said Daniel J. Meckstroth, Chief Economist for the Manufacturers Alliance/MAPI. “The key indicator for the equipment sector, non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, declined 0.7 percent in June after falling 1.5 percent in May. These lackluster statistics for durable manufacturing orders and shipments stand in sharp contrast to the Federal Reserve’s industrial production report which showed that inflation-adjusted production for durable goods increased a strong 0.8 percent in June and posted robust growth in the second quarter. MAPI’s own forecast is consistent with the Federal Reserve’s take on industrial activity. We believe the heavy industrial sector is growing again, and our view is supported by surveys of our members which indicate moderate growth.”
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