Manufacturing production rose 0.1 percent, recovering from a 0.2 percent drop in August. Durable manufacturing went up 1 percent after gaining 0.2 percent in the previous month, boosted by machinery (3 percent from -2.2 percent in August), fabricated metal products (0.7 percent from 0.4 percent), and computer and electronic products (0.9 percent from 0.3 percent). Nondurable manufacturing slumped 0.9 percent, following a decline of 0.6 percent in August, as output fell for chemicals (-2.6 percent from -2.3 percent in August), and petroleum and coal products (-1.7 percent from -0.1 percent). By contrast, output rose for both food, beverage, and tobacco products (0.6 percent from 0.3 percent in August) and plastics and rubber products (1.1 percent from -0.8 percent).
Also, mining output advanced 0.4 percent after contracting by 0.2 percent in the previous month; and utilities output grew 1.5 percent, recovering from a 4.9 percent fall in August. Within utilities, electric production rose 1.5 percent (-5 percent in August) and natural gas output increased 1.4 percent (-3.8 percent in August).
Compared to the same month of 2016, industrial production rose 1.6 percent, as output rose for manufacturing (1 percent) and mining (9.8 percent), but fell for utilities (-4.1 percent).
For the third quarter as a whole, industrial production fell 1.5 percent at an annual rate, with manufacturing shrinking by 2.2 percent.
Capacity utilization for the industrial sector increased 0.2 percentage point in September to 76.0 percent, a rate that is 3.9 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2016) average.