Durable Goods Orders, Shipments Up, but Plane Orders Skew Numbers

July 26, 2012

Durable goods orders rose more than expected last month, by 1.6%, but it was largely due to a surge in aircraft orders. These long-lasting manufactured products, such as washers and dryers, toasters and aircraft, make up a major source of trucking freight.


New orders for manufactured durable goods in June increased $3.4 billion to $221.6 billion, according the U.S. Census Bureau. This increase, up two consecutive months, followed a 1.6% May increase.

If you take out the transportation orders, durable goods orders fell 1.1%, the biggest decline since January, after rising 0.8 percent in May. A large order for planes that Boeing received in June likely cause the transportation numbers to increase.

There were declines in new orders for computers, fabricated metal products, electrical equipment and appliances and machinery.

Shipments of manufactured durable goods increased just slightly in June, $0.2 billion or 0.1% to $225.4 billion. This followed a 1.2 percent May increase. This number has been up six of the last seven months.

Machinery shipments, up four of the last five months, had the largest increase, $1 billion or 3.1% to $32.9 billion.