Shipments of factory orders have fallen for the second straight month while new orders have moved higher.
A new U.S. Commerce Department report shows shipments fell 0.7% in April following a 1.5% drop in March. Shipments of manufactured durable goods fell 0.4% following a 0.9% increase in March while shipments of non-durable manufactured goods, dropped for the second straight month in April by 1%.
In contrast, new factory order numbers look better adding 1% in April from the month before, up two of the last three months. Excluding new transportation orders the decline was only 0.1%. March’s performance was revised downward reflecting a 4.7% decline.
Orders for manufactured durable goods in April increased 3.5% while those for non-durable goods fell 1%.
The overall April increase was less than a consensus forecast of economists polled by Reuters, increasing concerns that these and other economic indicators show the economy is not as robust in the second quarter of the year as it was during the first quarter.