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Financial News: U.S. Manufacturing Activity Expands At Faster Rate In

U.S. Manufacturing Activity Expands At Faster Rate In August

09/01/2020 - 10:20:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Manufacturing activity in the U.S. expanded at a faster rate in the month of August, the Institute for Supply Management revealed in a report on Tuesday.

The ISM said its purchasing managers index rose to 56.0 in August from 54.2 in July, with a reading above 50 indicating growth in manufacturing activity. Economists had expected the index to inch up to 54.5.

"After the coronavirus (COVID-19) brought manufacturing activity to historic lows, the sector continued its recovery in August, the first full month of operations after supply chains restarted and adjustments were made for employees to return to work," said Timothy R. Fiore, Chair of the ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

He added, "Demand and consumption continued to drive expansion growth, with inputs representing near- and moderate-term supply chain difficulties."

The bigger than expected increase by the headline index came as the new orders index jumped to 67.6 in August from 61.5 in July.

The production index also increased to 63.3 in August from 62.1 in July, while the employment index climbed to 46.4 from 44.3 but still indicates a contraction.

On the inflation front, the prices index surged up to 59.5 in August from 53.2 in July, indicating an acceleration in the pace of price growth.

Fiore noted many panelists' companies are holding off on capital investments for the rest of 2020 due to the current economic environment.

The ISM is scheduled to release a separate report on activity in the service sector on Thursday. The non-manufacturing index is expected to edge down to 57.0 in August from 58.1 in July.

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