The ISM Manufacturing Index fell to 52.7 points in July – down 0.8 points from June’s reading. The manufacturing sector is still growing as readings above 50 indicate expansion. Of the 18 component industries, 11 reported growth in July, unchanged from the previous month. Respondents noted that business conditions have changed little from last month, and that falling oil prices are driving prices lower and “creating an expectation of even lower prices in the coming months.”
The production index increased 2.0 points to 56.0, growing at a faster pace than the previous month.
The employment index decreased 2.8 points to 52.7 in July, indicating that employment is growing a slower pace. Ten of the manufacturing industries reported growth in employment, while eight industries – Petroleum and Coal Products; Primary Metals; Plastics & Rubber Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; and Chemical Products – reported decreases in employment.
The index for new orders increased 0.5 points to 56.5, while inventories fell 3.5 points to 49.5 following two consecutive months of growth.
Export orders for July registered 48.0 points, indicating that the volume of exports decreased for the month. The imports index registered 52.0, growing at a slower pace than in June.
The inventories index fell 3.5 points to 49.5, indicating that raw materials are contracting.
The prices index registered 44.0 points, down 5.5 points from June, marking the ninth consecutive month of decreases in prices for raw materials.
Read the ISM release.