US Industrial Production Disappoints In February

Industrial output in the United States edged up only 0.1 percent in February, following a revised 0.3 percent drop in the previous month. Higher demand for heating boosted utilities while manufacturing fell for the third straight month due to lower automobile production.
Federal Reserve | Joana Taborda | 3/16/2015 1:52:51 PM
Manufacturing output decreased 0.2 percent in February. The production of durable goods moved down 0.6 percent, with widespread losses among its components, and the production of nondurable goods moved up 0.2 percent. The motor vehicles and parts industry posted a loss of 3.0 percent, the largest decrease among durable goods manufacturers; most other industries moved down more than 0.5 percent. Only the aerospace and miscellaneous transportation equipment industry recorded a significant increase in production, advancing 1.2 percent. Among the major nondurable goods industries, gains in the indexes for textile and product mills, for petroleum and coal products, and for chemicals more than offset losses elsewhere. The production of other manufacturing industries (publishing and logging) moved up 0.5 percent.

The index for mining fell 2.5 percent in February; drops in the indexes for coal mining and for oil and gas well drilling and servicing primarily accounted for the decrease. 

The output of utilities jumped 7.3 percent, as especially cold temperatures drove up demand for heating. 

At 105.8 percent of its 2007 average, total industrial production in February was 3.5 percent above its level of a year earlier. 

Capacity utilization for the industrial sector decreased to 78.9 percent in February, a rate that is 1.2 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2014) average.

US Industrial Production Disappoints In February