ISM: Non-Manufacturing Sector Growth Slipped in September

The ISM Non-Manufacturing Index registered 52.6 points in September, 3.8 percentage points lower than August’s figure. This was the 116th consecutive month of expansion as a reading above 50 indicates growth. However, this was the lowest reading in three years. Thirteen of the eighteen non-manufacturing industries reported growth. Respondents are concerned about tariffs, labor resources and the direction of the economy.

Growth in the Business Activity Index decreased 6.3 percentage points to 55.2, the 122nd consecutive month of growth. Thirteen industries reported increased business activity, while two reported decreased activity. Comments from respondents include: “Increased commercial, residential-construction and service activity” and “Lower volumes than expected.”

Non-manufacturing employment grew for the 67th consecutive month, but moved closer to contraction. The index decreased 2.7 points to 50.4. Eleven industries reported increased employment, while four reported decreased employment.

The New Orders Index decreased 6.6 points to 53.7. Twelve industries reported increased business activity, while four reported decreased activity.

Supplier deliveries slowed yet again, as the index registered 51.0 points (readings above 50 for this index indicate slower deliveries). Nine industries reported slower deliveries, while six industries reported faster deliveries. Comments from respondents include: “Higher demands have slowed deliveries” and “Capacity constraints are pushing out lead times.”

Read the ISM release.