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Manufacturing growing faster than general economy

November was 28th consecutive month of expansion

January 11, 2012
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The manufacturing sector continued to expand in November, the 28th consecutive month of expansion, according to the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business. According to the Institute for Supply Management, the Purchasing Managers Index was 52.7 percent, 1.9 percentage points higher than October’s reading.

“A very strong improvement in new orders and production paints a rosy picture for near-term manufacturing activity,” said Daniel J. Meckstroth, chief economist for MAPI.

“In addition, strong gains in motor vehicle production, capital equipment production, and oil field goods continue to drive moderate industrial growth.

Still recovering

“The fact that manufacturing is growing faster than the general economy, though, is unsurprising since the industrial sector is still catching up,” he added. “Manufacturing production has recovered only a bit over one-half of its loss from the 2008-2009 recession, in contrast to full recovery in GDP for the economy at large in the third quarter of 2011.

Of the 18 manufacturing industries, eight are reporting growth in November, in the following order: Wood Products; Textile Mills; Petroleum & Coal Products; Primary Metals; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; and Paper Products.

The nine industries reporting contraction in November — listed in order — are: Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Chemical Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Transportation Equipment; and Machinery.

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