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Fifth District Survey of Manufacturing Activity

April 23, 2019 10 a.m.

Fifth District Manufacturing Activity Moderated in April

Overview

Fifth District manufacturing activity moderated in April, according to the latest survey from the Richmond Fed. The composite index fell from 10 in March to 3 in April, weighed down by slightly negative readings in the indexes for both shipments and new orders but buoyed by a positive reading for the third component index, employment. Firms were optimistic, expecting conditions to improve in the next six months.

Survey results suggested continued positive growth in both employment and wages, although these indexes dropped slightly in April. However, firms reported a decline in the average workweek as they continued to struggle to find workers with the necessary skills. Firms expected this difficulty to continue in the coming months.

The growth rate of prices paid by respondents rose in April, while that of prices received fell, widening the gap between the two, as growth in prices paid continued to outpace growth in prices received. Firms expected growth of both prices paid and prices received to decrease in the near future.

Charts

Manufacturing Activity
Manufacturing Employment
Manufacturing Wages
Manufacturing Price Trends
Manufacturing Shipments
Manufacturing New Orders
Vendor Lead Time

Index Table

Manufacturing Business Activity Indexes

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Regional Survey Team (804) 697-8702