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Financial News: U.S. Manufacturing Growth Unexpectedly Shows Continued Slo

U.S. Manufacturing Growth Unexpectedly Shows Continued Slowdown In May

06/03/2019 - 10:30:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - A report released by the Institute for Supply Management on Monday showed the pace of growth in U.S. manufacturing activity unexpectedly saw a continued slowdown in the month of May.

The ISM said its purchasing managers edged down to 52.1 in May from 52.8 in April, dropping to its lowest level since hitting 51.7 in October of 2016.

While a reading above 50 still indicates growth in the manufacturing sector, economists had expected the index to inch up to 53.0.

"Softening this month was primarily due to inputs - supplier deliveries and inventories," said Timothy Fiore, Chair of the ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

The report said the supplier deliveries index slid to 52.0 in May from 54.6 in April, while the inventories index fell to 50.9 from 52.9.

The production index also dipped to 51.3 in May from 52.3 in April, indicating a modest slowdown in the pace of growth.

On the other hand, the ISM said the new orders index rose to 52.7 in May from 51.7 in April and the employment index climbed to 53.7 from 52.4.

The report also said the prices index jumped to 53.2 in May from 50.0 in April, suggesting prices increased after coming in unchanged in the previous month.

"Respondents expressed concern with the escalation in the U.S.-China trade standoff, but overall sentiment remained predominantly positive," Fiore said. "The PMI continues to reflect slowing expansion."

On Wednesday, the ISM is scheduled to release a separate report on activity in the service sector in the month of May. The index of activity in the sector is expected to come in unchanged at 55.5.

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