Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
- Durable Goods
New orders for durable goods jumped up 3.0 percent (nonannualized rate) in December, and unlike November’s 4.3 percent gain, it was not heavily influenced by a spike in new orders for transportation equipment. Excluding transportation, new durables orders still increased 2.1 percent, compared to 0.5 percent gain in November, and are now up 7 percent over the past year. An important signal of future equipment and software investment—new orders of nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft—more than reversed a 1.2 percent decrease in November, rising 2.9 percent in December. Still, the series is up at an annualized rate of just 2.8 percent over the past three months, compared to its 12-month growth rate of 5.4 percent, which suggests a loss of momentum in recent months. Shipments of durables rose 2.1 percent in December, following a 0.3 percent decline in November, and are trending at a 9 percent clip over the past year. Durables shipments excluding transportation equipment increased 2.4 percent in December, slightly better than headline shipments, and are up roughly 10 percent over the past year. Interestingly, shipments of nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft jumped up 2.9 percent in December following three consecutive monthly declines. Manufacturers’ continued to add to their inventories of durables in December, albeit at a slower pace than earlier in the year. Inventories ticked up 0.3 percent in December, compared to an average monthly gain of 1.2 percent through the first half of the 2011.