Tag: hiring

Kansas City Fed: Reduced Manufacturing Activity in March

The Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank said that manufacturing activity declined in March, contracting for the first time in 12 months. The composite index of general business conditions declined from 1 in February to -4 in March. Perhaps more worrisome, the decline in new orders accelerated (down from -10 to -20), falling for the third straight month. The sample comments provide clues about why this is the case, with respondents noting a number of headwinds impacting their demand. These include snowstorms, reduced crude oil prices, the stronger U.S. dollar and the West Coast ports slowdown. (continue reading…)

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Richmond Fed: Manufacturing Activity Contracted in March

The Richmond Federal Reserve Bank said that manufacturing activity contracted in March, declining for the first time in 12 months. The composite index of general business conditions decreased from zero in February to -8 in March. The underlying data were lower across-the-board, reflecting weaknesses for the month in terms of overall activity and a deterioration from February’s numbers. This included new orders (down from -2 to -13), shipments (down from -1 to -13), capacity utilization (down from -4 to -7) and the average workweek (up from -6 to -4). As such, manufacturers clearly pulled back in a number of areas for the month, likely due to global slowness, a stronger dollar and reduced commodity prices. On the positive side, hiring (up from 4 to 6) continued to grow modestly, providing some encouragement moving forward. (continue reading…)

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Philly Fed: Modest Manufacturing Growth in the District in March

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia reported that manufacturing activity has expanding modestly in March. The composite index of general business activity edged marginally lower, down from 5.2 in February to 5.0 in March. Overall activity has been softer-than-desired in the first three months of 2015, averaging just 5.5; whereas, the composite index had averaged a more robust 18.6 for 2014 as a whole. Nonetheless, the Manufacturing Business Outlook Survey has now expanded for 13 straight months, and business leaders in the district remain relatively optimistic about the coming months. (continue reading…)

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Michigan Created the Most Manufacturing Jobs in January

Michigan created the most net new manufacturing jobs in January, according to the latest state figures from the Bureau of Labor of Statistics. There were 4,900 additional manufacturing workers in Michigan in January, which continues to benefit from strong demand in motor vehicles and parts. Other states with significant employment gains in the sector in January included Georgia (up 3,900), Ohio (up 3,600), North Carolina (up 3,400), Wisconsin (up 2,900) and Kentucky (up 2,800). (continue reading…)

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NY Fed: Manufacturers Expanded in March, but at a Slower Pace

The Empire State Manufacturing Survey reported expansion in the sector for the third straight month in the district, but at a slower pace. The composite index of general business conditions from the New York Federal Reserve Bank has declined from 10.0 in January to 7.8 in February to 6.9 in March. The underlying data suggest a mixed picture for the sector. The pace of shipments (down from 14.1 to 7.9) eased for the month, but continued to grow at a decent rate. In contrast, growth in new orders (down from 1.2 to -2.4) slipped into negative territory. Roughly one-quarter of survey respondents said that their orders had increased for the month, with 27.5 percent noting declines. As such, these data mirror other indicators which reflect current headwinds in the economy. (continue reading…)

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Manufacturing Job Openings Rebounded in January

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings rebounded in January after easing slightly in December. The number of job postings in the sector rose from 310,000 in December to 330,000 in January, which was just barely lower than the 332,000 seen in November. November’s pace had been the fastest since August 2007, and the number of openings have risen steadily on a year-over-year pace, up from 263,000 in January 2014. In this latest report, both durable (up from 195,000 to 202,000) and nondurable (up from 115,000 to 127,000) goods industries reported more openings for the month. (continue reading…)

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The U.S. Unemployment Rate Fell to 5.5 Percent, the Lowest Since May 2008

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturers added 8,000 net new workers in February. This was slower than the pace seen in the past four months (October to January), which averaged 27,000 per month. Yet, it was with consistent softer demand and production data, with weaknesses in export markets, strength in the U.S. dollar, the West Coast ports slowdown and reduced energy prices dampening activity as we begin the new year. On the positive side, manufacturers have now added to their workforce for 19 straight months, with 877,000 additional employees in the sector since March 2010, its lowest point after the recession. (continue reading…)

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ADP: Hiring in the Manufacturing Sector Slowed to 3,000 in February

ADP said that manufacturers added 3,000 net new workers in February, its slowest pace since January 2014. This suggests that the weaker demand and production data seen in other economic indicators has begun to negatively impact the pace of hiring. Still, employment has expanded for 13 straight months, averaging 14,275 per month over that time frame, according to ADP. Moreover, over the past six months, employment growth has been even stronger, averaging just over 17,580 each month. Hopefully, the weaker rate of hiring observed in February is just a respite to stronger gains in the months ahead. (continue reading…)

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Kansas City Fed: Manufacturing Activity Slowed to a Near Crawl in February

The Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank said that manufacturing activity slowed to a near crawl in February, mirroring the easing we have seen in other regions. The composite index of general business conditions dropped has declined from 8 in December to 3 in January to 1 in February. The silver lining, of course, is that activity in the sector continues to expand, albeit barely, as it has now for 14 straight months. Still, the weaker headline figure was pulled lower by contracting levels of new orders (down from -8 to -10), exports (down from -7 to -13) and employment (down from zero to -4). There were several reasons cited in the sample comments for the softness, including sluggish global growth, reduced crude oil prices and the West Coast ports slowdown. (continue reading…)

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Chinese Manufacturing Shifted to a Marginal Expansion in February

The HSBC Flash China Manufacturing PMI shifted to a marginal expansion in February, improving slightly after contracting for two straight months. The headline index increased from 49.7 in January to 50.1 in February. The underlying data were mixed. New orders (down from 50.8 to 50.4) and output (up from 50.1 to 50.8) grew slowly for the month, even as the pace of sales slipped a bit. At the same time, new export orders (down from 51.1 to 47.1) and employment (up from 49.1 to 49.3) declined on net. Export sales, in particularly, deteriorated to their lowest level since August 2013, which was disappointing. The index for hiring, which has contracted now for 24 consecutive months, increased to a 7-month high, with the pace of the decline decreasing. Final PMI data will be come out on Monday, March 2.    (continue reading…)

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