Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
Industrial production limped forward in June, edging up just 0.9 percent (annualized) following a large 17.4 percent jump in May. While June’s growth was soft, it beat analysts’ expectations for a mild decline. The driver behind the gain was a 37.8 percent increase in utilities output, as record-setting summer heat caused people to crank the A-C for a month straight, and to a smaller extent by a 4.9 percent rise in mining activity. Manufacturing output, which accounts for roughly 75 percent of the index’s weight, countered these increases with a 4.5 percent retreat. Overall industrial production has advanced in all but one of the past 12 months, boosting year-over-year growth to 8.2 percent, its strongest since January 1998.
Capacity utilization was virtually unchanged in June at 74.1 percent, and so far has climbed nearly half-way back to its pre-recession level around 81 percent.