Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
- Durable Goods
New orders for durable goods rose 1.1 percent (nonannualized rate) in May, following a modest downward revision to April’s estimate (down from a 0.1 uptick to a 0.2 percent decrease). Some of May’s increase in new orders can be attributed to a 2.7 percent rise in new orders for transportation equipment (and most of that was aircraft orders). Excluding this category, new orders rose 0.4 percent in May, following declines of 0.6 percent in April and 0.8 percent in March. The near-term trajectory in new orders excluding transportation is decidedly sluggish. It’s 3-month annualized growth rate stands at −3.7 percent, while its 6-month trend is up just 1.5 percent. This near-term softness has weighed on the series’ 12-month growth rate, which has fallen from a recent high of 10.3 percent in February to just 3.8 percent as of May. The near-term outlook for equipment and software investment is often proxied by nondefense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, which rebounded from April’s 1.4 percent decline, rising 1.6 percent in May. Still, its trajectory looks weak, as the year-over-year growth rate in nondefense capital goods orders excluding aircraft has fallen from a recent high of 12 percent in February to a mere 1.5 percent in May (its slowest growth rate since December 2009). Shipments of durables look a little stronger than new orders. Shipments rose 0.7 percent in May, and strengthening on a year-over-year basis (up 8.7 percent in May compared to a recent low of 5.9 percent in March). Even excluding transportation equipment, shipments are up 6.2 percent over the past year. Inventories grew by 0.5 percent in May and are up 5.8 percent over the past year.