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Economy in Brief

U.S. Durable Goods Orders Are Little Changed
by Tom Moeller  September 28, 2016

New orders for durable goods were fairly stable during August (-1.3% y/y) following a 3.6% July increase, revised from 4.4%. A 1.4% decline had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey.

Orders for transportation equipment improved 0.6% (-1.6% y/y) following an 8.9% jump. A 0.7% rise (0.4% y/y) in motor vehicle & parts bookings offset a 9.1% decline in orders for aircraft & parts. Nondefense aircraft & parts orders plunged 21.9% (-39.5% y/y) following a 73.7% jump. Defense aircraft bookings gained 24.2% (15.0% y/y) following a 20.7% rise.

Nondefense capital goods orders declined 4.4% (-11.0% y/y) after a 7.8% increase. Orders excluding aircraft & parts rose 0.6% (-3.1% y/y), about the same as during each of the prior three months.

Primary metals orders increased, with a 0.2% rise (-4.4% y/y) following a 1.2% gain. Fabricated metal orders fell 0.5% (+4.5% y/y) after a 1.5% jump.

Orders for electrical equipment declined 2.5% (-4.5% y/y) and reversed the prior month's 3.7% jump. Machinery orders eased 0.5% (-8.0% y/y) following a 1.0% increase. Orders for computers & electronic products were off 0.2% (+2 .5% y/y) following a 2.5% gain. Computer & related product orders fell 5.8% (-12 .0% y/y) while communications equipment orders gained 1.8% (3.3% y/y).

Shipments of durable goods eased 0.4% (-2.2% y/y) after no change in July. Shipments excluding transportation remained unchanged (-1.4% y/y), about as they have for six months. Unfilled orders eased 0.1% (-2.1% y/y), down for the third straight month. Excluding transportation, unfilled orders improved 0.1% (0.2% y/y) following a 0.2% gain. Inventories of durable goods rose 0.1% (-2.2% y/y) following a 0.4% rise. Outside of the transportation sector, inventories gained 0.3% (-2.3% y/y) as they did during the prior month.

The durable goods figures are available in Haver's USECON database. The Action Economics consensus forecast figure is in the AS1REPNA database.

Supervision and Regulation is the title of today's speech by Fed Chair Janet L. Yellen and it is available here.

Durable Goods NAICS Classification Aug Jul Jun Aug Y/Y 2015 2014 2013
New Orders (SA, %) -0.0 3.6 -4.3 -1.3 -2.9 4.8 2.8
  Transportation 0.6 8.9 -11.5 -1.6 -4.0 6.8 8.8
Total Excluding Transportation -0.4 1.1 -0.3 -1.1 -2.3 3.8 -0.1
  Nondefense Capital Goods -4.4 7.8 -10.9 -11.0 -9.6 1.2 4.2
    Excluding Aircraft 0.6 0.8 0.5 -3.1 -3.2 0.8 0.4
Shipments -0.4 0.0 0.4 -2.2 1.1 3.5 2.8
Unfilled Orders -0.1 -0.2 -0.9 -2.1 -2.4 8.6 5.7
Inventories 0.1 0.4 -0.1 -2.2 -0.6 5.2 1.0
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