PROTECTING SMALL BUSINESS, PROMOTING ENTREPRENEURSHIP

The Economy: Manufacturing Production Growth Continues

By at 18 November, 2018, 9:42 am

by Raymond J. Keating-

Industrial production in October edged ahead by 0.1 percent compared to September, according to the latest report from the Federal Reserve. Compared to a year earlier, industrial output was up by a solid 4.1 percent.

The lone growth area among major industry groups in October was manufacturing production, which was up by 0.3 percent compared to September. That also was the fifth consecutive month of manufacturing output growth.

As the Fed reported, while motor vehicle assemblies were off, manufacturing otherwise generally showed growth:

“Manufacturing output moved up 0.3 percent in October despite a sizable drop in motor vehicle assemblies; manufacturing production excluding motor vehicles and parts increased 0.5 percent. The output of durables advanced 0.5 percent, as the indexes for most of its component industries other than motor vehicles strengthened. Nondurables posted a gain of 0.2 percent, with mixed results among its industries. The output of other manufacturing (publishing and logging) fell 1.5 percent.”

Compared to a year earlier, manufacturing output was up by 2.7 percent, while mining grew by 13.1 percent and utilities by 1.7 percent.

If growth persists in November and December, the U.S. is on track in 2018 to see the strongest expansion in total industrial and manufacturing production in six or seven years.

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Raymond J. Keating is chief economist for the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council.

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