Factory activity in the Philadelphia area gathered pace in January compared with the prior month as demand for goods strengthened.
- The index for current general activity of the Business Outlook Survey expanded to 23.2 in January from 15.4 in December, surpassing the 18.5 consensus outlook from Wall Street’s estimate.
- In the Philly Fed’s district, nearly 31% of firms reported gains in overall activity in January, as 7% reported decreases compared with the prior month.
- Demand for goods gathered momentum. The new orders index expanded to 17.9 from 13.7 the prior month, and the shipments index expanded to 20.8 from 15.3, signaling a steeper growth rate for both new orders and shipments.
The employment index dropped to 26.1 from 33.9 reflecting that firms in the zone continued to employ workers, at a slower rate than the prior month. A majority of firms, almost 63%, posted steady employment levels.
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