All unexpected: US manufacturing growth plunged in May, prices paid fell in April, March construction spending revised sharply downward:
6/1/11, "US Manufacturing Growth Slowest Since Sept 2009," Reuters, CNBC
"The pace of growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector tumbled in May, slackening more than expected to its slowest since September 2009, according to an industry report released Wednesday.
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of national factory activity fell to 53.5 in May from 60.4 the month before. The reading
- missed economists' expectations for 57.7.
A reading below 50 indicates contraction in the manufacturing sector, while a number above 50 means expansion.
New orders fell to 51.0 from 61.7 in April, the lowest since June 2009. The index for prices paid
- fell to 76.5 from 85.5,
- below expectations of 82.0.
The data echoed earlier regional reports that showed softer manufacturing growth last month.
In other economic data, U.S. construction spending rose in April to record the largest gain in six months, likely boosted by home renovations, but the prior month's outlays were revised down sharply, a government report showed on Wednesday.
Construction spending increased 0.4 percent to an annual rate of $764.98 billion, the Commerce Department said. March's construction spending was revised [downward] to show a modest 0.1 percent increase rather than the previously reported 1.4 percent advance.
Economists polled by Reuters had forecast construction spending rising 0.3 percent in April.
Overall construction spending dropped 9.3 percent from a year ago.
Private construction spending rose 1.7 percent as investment in residential projects climbed 3.1 percent to $232.13 billion, most likely because of an increase in renovations as housing starts fell sharply in April.
Spending on new single family home construction fell 1.0 percent, while outlays on multifamily homes eased 0.1 percent in April.
Private nonresidential outlays rose 0.5 percent. Spending on public construction fell 1.9 percent in April, with outlays on federal projects dropping 2.0 percent. Construction spending by state and local governments declined 1.9 percent."
via Drudge Report