Tuesday, November 3, 2009

What Goes Down... Must Come Up... Factory Orders Edition

Marketwatch details:

Orders for U.S. manufactured goods increased a seasonally adjusted 0.9% in September on gains in machinery, autos, defense goods and chemicals, the Commerce Department estimated Tuesday.

Factory orders have risen in five of the past six months, but are down 13.9% in the first nine months of 2009 compared with the same period a year ago.

Factory orders fell 0.8% in August and rose 1.4% in July. Read the full report. September's 0.9% gain was stronger than the 0.6% increase expected by economists surveyed by MarketWatch.

The report is consistent with other data showing the factory sector bouncing back from the worst recession since World War II. On Monday, the Institute for Supply Management reported that its purchasing managers' index rose to 55.7% in October, the highest in two years.

Source: Census


Reader / Blogger GetYourselfConnected asks:
Any ideas on why the machinery component was so large? I am not aware of any seasonal factors, so why the big jump?
The Business Insider provides an answer and repeats the question (bold mine):
It's worth noting that new orders growth for Machinery was a strong 7.9% (far right column, below, which shows September vs. August growth), driven by a massive 47.4% jump in orders for construction machinery. Yes, the data is seasonally adjusted, and there appears to have been a large jump even on the non-adjusted numbers. Thus while data can be volatile, one wonders what exactly caused the massive jump here.
One has to remember how low a point we're rebounding from. Even with this jump, machinery orders were down 28.8% YTD through September and construction machiney is still down 64.5% YTD through September.

In $$ terms, the $23.5 billion in new machinery orders means new orders total $80 billion less YTD than the same period in 2008.