25 March 2009 14:27 [Source: ICIS news]
However, the sudden gain in February’s durable goods orders was attributed chiefly to
Excluding defence-related purchases, durable goods orders rose in February by a more modest 1.7%.
Even so, the upturn in durable goods is seen as a welcome sign after a half-year of continuing declines in this crucial economic indicator. February’s increase in orders followed a particularly sharp 7.3% decrease in January.
Durable goods are manufactured products meant to last three years or more and include such items as automobiles, appliances, transportation and manufacturing equipment. Many durable goods, such as computers and automobiles, are major downstream markets for chemicals and chemicals-based products used in manufacturing processes or as end-product components.
The department said that unfilled orders for manufactured durable goods fell by 1.3% or $10.5bn to $773.7bn, marking the fifth consecutive decline for this data set and following a 2% drop in January.
Inventories of produced durable goods decreased by $2.9bn or 0.9% in February to $336.8bn, the department said. This was the second consecutive month of decline and followed a 1.1% fall in January.
US durable goods orders and inventories*
Feb (bn $)
Feb vs Jan (%)
Jan vs Dec (r) (%)
r: revised *seasonally adjusted
($1 = €0.74)
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