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Industrial Production: Anemic trend continues but Q3 stronger than Q2

October 17, 2016
Bottom Line: Industrial activity increased slightly in September after dropping moderately in August. Industrial output growth is now declining modestly on a year-over-year basis. Still, industrial production in Q3 increased at an annual rate of 1.8%, moderately faster than in Q2.

Industrial Production ROSE by 0.1% in September, compared with market expectations for an increase of 0.1%. Moreover, the prior month was revised down just slightly. Output is now 1.0% BELOW its year ago level.

In September, Mining Output ROSE by 0.4%, and is now 9.5% BELOW its year ago level. Utility Generation FELL by 1.0% and is now 0.5% BELOW its year ago level. Manufacturing Output ROSE by 0.2% and is now only 0.0% BELOW its year ago level. Output in high-tech industries ROSE by 0.6%. Meanwhile, output in the motor vehicle industry rose by 0.2%. Excluding both the high-tech and motor vehicles industries, industrial output climbed by 0.2%.

Capacity Utilization ROSE by 0.0 points to 75.4%, compared with market expectations for a higher increase to 75.6%. Moreover, the prior month was revised from 75.5% to 75.3%. The Capacity utilization rate is now 1.1 percentage points below its year ago level and 4.6 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2015) average.