The Federal Reserve Board of Governors reported Aug. 16 that industrial production advanced 0.9% in July with stronger manufacturing leading the way. Manufacturing output rose 0.6% in July following gains of 0.2% in both May and June.
Capacity utilization for manufacturing in July was 75.0%, a rate 10.6
percentage points above its trough in June 2009. This level, however, still
sits 4.0 percentage points below its long-run (1972-2010) average.
Automotive products posted a jump of 5.9% to lead the increase in durable goods,
as motor vehicle output rebounded after the supply chain disruptions that
resulted from the earthquake in Japan.
The output of construction supplies increased 0.3% in July, its second small
monthly gain following a large jump in May, when it rose 1.3%. Over the past 12
months, the index for construction supplies has moved up 4.4%. Nevertheless,
the index in July remained more than 20% below its average level during
Another notable gain during July included the output of utilities, which
increased 2.8% as the extreme heat during the month boosted air conditioning
usage in many parts of the country.
At 94.2% of its 2007 average, total
industrial production for July was 3.7 percentage points above July 2010. The
capacity utilization rate for total industry climbed to 77.5%, a rate 2.2
percentage points above the rate from a year earlier but 2.9 percentage points
below its long-run average.