Factory Orders Grow, But Far Below Expectations

New orders for manufactured goods in the U.S. grew two-tenths of a percentage point in February, the latest month for which data are available, to $401.9 billion, the U.S. Commerce Department reported on March 31. The increase, however, was far below the full percent gain that economists generally expected. Factory orders fell 3.9% in January.

New orders for manufactured durables totaled $215.8 billion in February, up 2.7% from January's mark. New orders for nondurable manufactured goods totaled $186.1 billion in February, 2.5% below January's figure.

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