April 2, 2012

ISM Manufacturing in March: 53.4%, up from 52.4%

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 11:25 am

From the Institute for Supply Management:

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in March for the 32nd consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 34th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®.

“The PMI registered 53.4 percent, an increase of 1 percentage point from February’s reading of 52.4 percent, indicating expansion in the manufacturing sector for the 32nd consecutive month. The Production Index increased 3 percentage points from February’s reading of 55.3 percent to 58.3 percent, and the Employment Index increased 2.9 percentage points to 56.1 percent. Of the 18 industries included in the survey, 15 are experiencing overall growth. Comments from the panel remain positive, with several respondents citing increased sales and demand for the next few months.”

PERFORMANCE BY INDUSTRY

Of the 18 manufacturing industries, 15 are reporting growth in March …

The comments in the report are mostly bullish.

Expectations per Zero Hedge were for a reading of 53.0%.

Expansion is fine, and beats the alternative. But imagine where the index might be if energy prices — and expectations as to their direction — weren’t being kept high by Obama administration policies.

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