U.S. Manufacturing Advances For Third Consecutive Month

By John S. McClenahen Recording a 0.2% gain, U.S. factories in July posted their third consecutive monthly increase in output, reports the Federal Reserve Board. Factory output had advanced 0.2% in May and 0.3% in June. Overall U.S. industrial production, which includes mining and utilities in addition to manufacturing, rose 0.5% in July, more than twice the 0.2% rate that economists generally expected. Both numbers give credence to the increasingly common belief that the pace of U.S. economic recovery from the 2001 recession is accelerating. Capacity utilization also increased in July, rising to 72.8% from 72.7% for manufacturing and to 74.5% from 74.2% for industry generally.

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