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Economy

Economic Data (USA)

Friday, May 15, 2020

Industrial Production + Manufacturing + Capacity Utilization During April 2020

The Industrial Production, Manufacturing and Capacity Utilization numbers for April 2020 were released by the Federal Reserve this morning:

Industrial Production:
Predicted: -11.5%
Actual: -11.2%

Manufacturing:
Predicted: -11.4%
Actual: -13.7%

The yellow-highlighted percentages represent the month-to-month change in manufacturing, and physical output from mining operations, utility plants and factories for the entire United States.

Capacity Utilization Rate:
Predicted: 64.1%
Actual: 64.9

The Capacity Utilization Rate represents the use of available resources at mining operations, utility plants and factories for the entire United States last month.

The "predicted" figures are what economists were expecting, while the "actual" is the true or real figure.

From today's report:

"...Total industrial production fell 11.2 percent in April for its largest monthly drop in the 101-year history of the index, as the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic led many factories to slow or suspend operations throughout the month. Manufacturing output dropped 13.7 percent, its largest decline on record, as all major industries posted decreases. The output of motor vehicles and parts fell more than 70 percent; production elsewhere in manufacturing dropped 10.3 percent. The indexes for utilities and mining decreased 0.9 percent and 6.1 percent, respectively. At 92.6 percent of its 2012 average, the level of total industrial production was 15.0 percent lower in April than it was a year earlier. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector decreased 8.3 percentage points to 64.9 percent in April, a rate that is 14.9 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2019) average and 1.8 percentage points below its all-time (since 1967) low set in 2009.

In addition to the regular revisions that reflect incoming data, the industrial production indexes for March were revised to incorporate data on initial claims for unemployment insurance by employees who had worked in the industrial sector. The methods used to construct the estimates are described on the Federal Reserve Board's website at www.federalreserve.gov/releases/g17/g17_technical_qa.htm#covid2020ui.
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