Manufacturing Sector Expanded in March

The ISM Manufacturing Index registered 59.3 points in March, down 1.5 percentage points from the previous month, according to the Institute for Supply Management. March’s reading indicates the nineteenth consecutive month of expansion in manufacturing, as readings over 50 points denote expansion. Of the eighteen manufacturing industries, seventeen reported growth, while one reported contraction. Nine of the ten index components grew, while the customers’ inventories index contracted.

The Employment Index slid 2.4 points to 57.3 in March, indicating expansion for the eighteenth consecutive month. Twelve industries reported expansion, while one industry reported a decrease in employment.

The New Orders Index decreased 2.3 points to 61.9 in March, indicating growth for the twenty-seventh consecutive month. Fifteen industries reported expansion, while one reported a decrease in employment.

Export orders decreased 4.1 points to 58.7, indicating growth for the twenty-fifth consecutive month. Eleven industries reported growth while two reported a decrease in new export orders.

The Inventories Index registered 55.5 points, down 1.2 points from the previous month. Nine industries reported higher inventories, while two reported a decrease.

Read the ISM release.