For March, manufacturing activity in Texas continued to expand to 27.2, up from February’s 18.1, according to the Dallas Federal Reserve.
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All indexes remained positive for the month, although volume of orders, growth of orders and general business sentiment were at lower levels than February records.
General business activity slipped to 12.7 from February’s 26. The index rebounded in January to 4.7, following negative recordings in the fourth quarter 2006.
After notable rises in February, volume of new orders was at 20.6, down from 26.8 last month, growth rate of new orders was at 15.7, down from 18.1, and unfilled orders was at 7.5, down from 11.4.
Price paid remained stable, with over a third of respondents indicating an increase in raw materials costs. Prices paid decreased slightly to 12.4 from 15 in February.
Numbers of employees dipped slightly to 19.0 from 19.7, while wages and benefits and average employee workweek increased to 24.8 and 11.6, respectively.
Although lower than February’s levels, optimism for the next six months remains high.