United States: ISM manufacturing index climbs more than expected in February
March 1, 2016
In February, the ISM manufacturing index jumped to 49.5 in February from 48.2 in January, which beat the 48.5 the markets had expected. The index rose for second consecutive month in February and recovered part of the ground lost in December, when the indicator fell to the lowest level in six and half years. Despite the increase, the index remains below the 50-threshold that distinguishes between expansion from contraction in the sector.
February’s improvement showed that U.S. manufacturing firms increased production in February and hired more staff in order to cope with more activity. Meanwhile, as new orders remained subdued, manufacturing firms reported an increase in inventories.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist