Texas manufacturing production gained momentum in September compared with August, though overall activity in the sector expanded at the slowest pace in more than a year.
- The production index of the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey increased to 24.2 in September from 20.8 in August.
- Meanwhile, the index for general business activity that assesses broader business conditions in the manufacturing sector dropped to 4.6 in September from 9.0 in August.
- The reading, which reveals the sector expanded slightly, is the lowest since July 2020 and misses economists’ forecasts, who expected it to come in at 10.0. Any level above zero indicates growth.
- The industrial sector continues to expand across the U.S., but supply-chain bottlenecks and labor shortages are hampering output, and factories are struggling to keep up with rising demand.
- Other measures of manufacturing activity posted mixed results. Demand for goods dropped, while the capacity utilization and shipments indexes rose slightly to 24.5 and 18.7, respectively.
Labor market measures indicated faster employment growth and longer workweeks. The employment index jumped to 26.3, and the hours worked index dropped slightly to a record-high level of 20.4.
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