Manufacturing sector, economy continue to expand

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Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in November for the 16th consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 19th consecutive month, the nation’s supply executives said in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business released Wednesday, Dec. 1. The PMI registered 56.6 percent, a decrease of 0.3 percentage point when compared to October’s reading of 56.9 percent. A reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing economy generally is expanding.

“The manufacturing sector grew during November, with both new orders and production continuing to expand,” says Norbert Ore, chair of the Institute for Supply Management’s Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. “November’s rate of growth is the second-fastest in the last six months. Exports and imports continue to support expansion in the sector.”

Ore says prices moderated slightly during the month, but comments from the respondents express concerns with regard to pricing pressures. “The list of commodities in short supply increased, though short-supply items are not yet posing significant problems,” he says. “Manufacturing continues to benefit from the recovery in autos, but those industries reliant upon housing continue to struggle.”