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Financial News: Chicago Business Barometer Drops More Than Expected In

Chicago Business Barometer Drops More Than Expected In July

07/31/2017 - 10:08:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Growth in Chicago-area business activity slowed by more than anticipated in the month of July, MNI Indicators revealed in a report released on Monday.

MNI Indicators said its Chicago business barometer tumbled to 58.9 in July from 65.7 in June. While a reading above 50 still indicates growth, economists had expected the index to drop to 61.0.

The bigger than expected decrease by the index snapped a run of five straight monthly increases in business optimism.

The pullback by the Chicago business barometer came after it reached its highest level in three years in the previous month.

MNI Indicators said the drop in sentiment was broad-based in July, though particularly concentrated across both demand and output.

The report said the new orders index plunged by 11.6 points to 60.3, the lowest level since February, while the production index slumped by 6.9 points to 60.8, the lowest since April.

The employment index also fell for the second straight month, dropping by 4.0 points to 52.6 in July and hitting its lowest level since March.

On the other hand, MNI Indicators said inflationary pressures at the factory gate picked up in July, with the indicator rising 3.4 points to 60.9.

"MNI's July Chicago Business Barometer should be viewed in the context of the underlying, upward trend in business sentiment witnessed since early 2016." said Jamie Satchi, Economist at MNI Indicators.

Satchi added, "Key indicators, despite reversing their June reading, remain above their respective averages set over the last twelve months, and point towards robust confidence among U.S firms."

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