US manufacturing, exports and imports slid in November. Exports up in Mid-America.

December 3, 2019 – Economic activity in the manufacturing sector pulled back in November, including new export orders and imports, said the nation’s supply executives in the latest Institute of Supply Management (ISM) Manufacturing’s Report On Business.

Global Trade

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“Global trade remains the most significant cross-industry issue said Timothy Fiore, Chair of the ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

ISM’s New Export Orders Index slogged in at 47.9 percent in November, a decrease of 2.5 percentage points compared to the October reading of 50.4 percent, indicating that new export orders slid after growing in October.

Its Imports Index registered 48.3 percent in November, 3 percentage points higher when compared to the 45.3 percent reported for October, indicating that imports contracted for the fifth consecutive month. Respondents continued to note a need to place orders in advance of the Lunar New Year season in Asia,” said Mr. Fiore.

The Mid-America 9-state trade numbers were mixed with new export orders plummeting to 39.1 in November from October’s 44.7. On the other hand, imports climbed to 52.0 from last month’s below growth neutral reading. “Supply managers advanced purchasing from abroad in anticipation of higher tariffs in the weeks and months ahead,” said Professor Ernie Goss, PhD, director of Creighton University’s Jack A. MacAllister Chair in Regional Economics.

The nation’s manufacturing contracted in November, registering 48.1 percent, a decrease of 0.2 percentage point from the October reading of 48.3 percent. The manufacturing index contracted for the fourth straight month, at faster levels compared to October. This marks eight straight months of softening or contraction in manufacturing, according to the report.

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