United States: Manufacturing index returns to positive territory
October 1, 2012
In September, the ISM manufacturing index rose 1.9 percentage points to 51.5%, exceeding market expectations, which had anticipated the index inching up to only 49.7%. The figure marks a return to positive territory for the manufacturing sector, after the index remained below the 50% threshold during three consecutive months. The September reading reflected improvements in four out of the five sub-categories that compose the index, with new orders and employment recording the largest gains. According to the ISM "comments from the panel reflect a mix of optimism over new orders beginning to pick up, and continued concern over soft global business conditions and an unsettled political environment".