New York Fed Index Shows State’s Manufacturing Remains in Slump
New York State manufacturing remains in distress, with a gauge of May factory activity shrinking at the second-fastest pace in records back to 2001, indicating the economy’s recovery from the pandemic will be slow.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s general business conditions index improved to minus 48.5 from an all-time low of minus 78.2 in March, a report out Friday showed. The bank’s measures of orders, shipments, employment and the average workweek all advanced this month.
Manufacturing has slowed significantly as the coronavirus disrupted global supply chains and caused sharp cutbacks in demand. The May report showed some signs of stabilization, however, as the gauges of employment and shipments jumped by 49.2 points and more than 29 points, respectively.
New York manufacturers grew more sanguine about economic conditions over the next six months, with the regional Fed bank’s future index advancing 22.1 points to 29.1, the highest since July 2019.
The survey responses were collected between May 4 and May 10. Readings below zero indicate contraction, and the median projection in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for the gauge to improve to minus 60. The Empire State report is the first of several regional Fed manufacturing indexes to be released this month.
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