Manufacturing index up in April


Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in April for the 33rd consecutive month and the overall economy grew for the 35th consecutive month, the country's supply executives said in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business.

“The PMI registered 54.8 percent, an increase of 1.4 percentage points from March's reading of 53.4 percent, indicating expansion in the manufacturing sector for the 33rd consecutive month,” Bradley Holcomb, chairman of the Institute for Supply Management’s Manufacturing Business Survey Committee, said in a statement.

“Sixteen of the 18 industries reflected overall growth in April, and the new orders, production and employment indexes all increased, indicating growth at faster rates than in March,” he added. “The prices index for raw materials remained at 61 percent in April, the same rate as reported in March. Comments from the panel generally indicate stable to strong demand, with some concerns cited over increasing oil prices and European stability.”

A PMI reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50 percent indicates that it is generally contracting.

A PMI in excess of 42.6 percent, over a period of time, generally indicates an expansion of the overall economy.

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