ISM manufacturing index d
  • Prior report 46.7
  • Prices paid 45.2 vs 49.9 prior
  • Employment 48.1 vs 45.8 prior
  • New orders 47.1 vs 48.3 prior
  • Inventories 44.3 vs 44.8 prior
  • Production 50.3 vs 48.5 prior

This is a nice 'soft landing' report as the prices paid number sinks after a rise last month.

Comments in the report:

  • Anticipation of the U.S. Federal Reserve holding off on interest-rate changes will encourage more companies to spend on capital investments again. As budgets get approval after the start of the calendar year, this should help drive investment and increase manufacturing activity once again.” [Computer & Electronic Products]
  • “Overall, order intake has picked up over the last quarter and a backlog of projects is beginning to accumulate.” [Chemical Products]
  • “Demand is up across the board. We are starting to see back orders grow again.” [Transportation Equipment]
  • “Commodity costs are decreasing. Supply is readily available, and customers are still ordering to last year's volumes.” [Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products]
  • “Business is slowing. Finished goods inventories are growing.” [Machinery]
  • “We are forecasting a somewhat strong year for 2024. We're currently mildly optimistic for how next year will play out.” [Fabricated Metal Products]
  • “We are seeing stronger demand from our American Automotive OEM customers now that the United Auto Workers (UAW) strike has been resolved. Looking at a very strong first quarter of 2024.” [Primary Metals]
  • “Higher financing costs have diminished demand for residential investment. Customers are delaying a portion of their plans until borrowing costs are reduced. We are impacted with reduced new orders, diminished backlog of orders and uncertain short-term demand for products and services.” [Wood Products]
  • “Finishing the year similar to 2022; however, 2023 was more erratic. Working to restore inventory position to ensure we have appropriate safety stock.” [Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components]
  • “Business conditions are good; sales and production are tracking in accordance with forecasts.” [Miscellaneous Manufacturing]

The comments in the ISM report are generally upbeat.