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U.S. Factory Orders Rise 1.7% In June

By Agence France-Presse New orders for goods from U.S. factories rose 1.7% in June, the government said Aug. 4, providing further evidence of a rebound in the hard-hit manufacturing sector. Orders for durable goods -- big-ticket items such as cars and washing machines -- surged by an 11-month record of 2.6% while orders for non-durable goods rose 0.7%, the Commerce Department said. Demand for big-ticket items was driven by a 4.7% surge in orders for transport equipment, in particular a 21.1% leap in orders for civilian aircraft. Machinery orders surged 4%. A key barometer of business investment plans -- orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft -- rose 1.7%. Overall, unfilled orders -- an indication of future manufacturing activity -- climbed 0.3%. Shipments rose 1.1% in June. Manufacturers pared inventories by 0.2%. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2003

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