Economic Watch: Industrial Production Rises in August

September 16, 2013

By Evan Lockridge

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Industrial production in the United States has posted its biggest increase in six months, according to the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The 0.4% increase in August from the month before follows it being unchanged in July, with the Federal Reserve calling the hike “broadly based.”

Following a decrease in July of 0.4%, which was steeper than previously reported, manufacturing production rose 0.7% in August. The output of mines moved up 0.3%, its fifth consecutive monthly increase and the production of utilities fell 1.5%, its fifth consecutive monthly decrease.

At 99.4% of its 2007 average, total industrial production in August was 2.7% above its year-earlier level. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector increased 0.2% in August to 77.8%, a rate 0.6% points above its level of a year earlier.

This follows a report from the Institute of Supply Management, earlier this month, indicating U.S. manufacturing was increasing at its best pace in more than two years.

Manufacturing accounts for less than 20% of total U.S. economic activity, but its performance is regarded as an indication of overall economic health, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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