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Dallas Fed Manufacturing Survey a Mixed Bag

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ManufacturingIn its monthly report on manufacturing activity in Texas, the Dallas Federal Reserve reported today that its general activity index rose sharply, from a reading of -2.8 in November to 6.8 in December. The company outlook index also rose nicely, from -4.8 in November to 9.2 in December.

The not-so-good news is that the production index remains very low, at 2.7. That is an improvement from the November reading of 1.7, but indicates that growth continues to be slow. The new orders index was also a disappointment, rising only slightly from 0.4 in November to 0.9 in December.

The Dallas Fed included several comments from the survey’s respondents. Here are a few:

  • We have had a significant delay of scheduled orders from December into next calendar year. Our customers are conserving cash and asking us to delay shipments and hold the inventory. There is much uncertainty over the fiscal cliff.

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