The November reading of the Empire State manufacturing index is out, and it's ugly.
The regional activity index unexpectedly fell to -2.21 in November from 1.52 in October.
Economists were expecting the number to climb to 5.00.
"Despite the softer trend in the past few months in this index, we still view manufacturing as being on a positive trend on a national level," said Barclays' Cooper Howes. "Given the relatively small amount of manufacturing activity that takes place in the Northeast relative to other areas such as the Midwest, the recent prints in the Empire State do not yet suggest substantial downside risk to that view."
From the release:
The November 2013 Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that manufacturing conditions weakened somewhat for New York manufacturers. The general business conditions index fell four points to -2.2, its first negative reading since May. The new orders index also entered negative territory, falling thirteen points to -5.5, and the shipments index moved below zero with a fourteen-point drop to -0.5. The prices paid index fell five points to 17.1, indicating a slowing of input price increases. The prices received index fell to -4.0; the negative reading was a sign that selling prices had declined—their first retreat in two years. Labor market conditions were also weak, with the index for number of employees falling four points to 0.0, while the average workweek index dropped to -5.3. Despite the negative readings registered by many of the indexes for current activity, indexes for the six-month outlook continued to convey a strong degree of optimism about future business conditions.
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