From the Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Expands for Fifth Straight Month
Texas factory activity expanded in October for the fifth month in a row following a record contraction due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, rose three points to 25.5, indicating a slight acceleration in output growth.
Other measures of manufacturing activity also point to stronger growth this month. The new orders index advanced five points to 19.9, and the growth rate of orders index inched up to 14.3. The capacity utilization index rose from 17.5 to 23.0, while the shipments index was largely unchanged at 21.9.
Perceptions of broader business conditions continued to improve in October. The general business activity index pushed further above average, coming in at 19.8, a two-year high. The company outlook index moved up three points to 17.8, also a two-year high. Uncertainty regarding companies’ outlooks continued to rise, with the index moving up four points to 11.0.
Labor market measures indicated continued but slower growth in employment and work hours. The employment index remained positive but fell from 14.5 to 8.7, suggesting less-robust hiring.