Midwest Manufacturing Output Down Slightly in September

Auto sector leads decline for month but remains well ahead of 2011.

Manufacturing output decreased 0.4% in September, the Chicago Fed reported. The Midwest Manufacturing Index (CFMMI) dropped to a seasonally adjusted level of 93.4 (2007 = 100). Revised data show the index was down 1.8% in August.

Overall manufacturing production increased 0.2% in September, the Federal Reserve reported. Regional output rose 8.5% in September from a year earlier, and national output increased 3.5% compared to 2011.

Production in three of the four manufacturing sectors in the Midwest decreased in September:

• Auto production declined 2.2%;

• Machinery production decreased 0.3%;

• Steel output moved down 0.1%; and

• Resource sector output increased 0.9%.

The region’s auto sector production declined 2.2% in September after decreasing 5.3% in August. National auto output moved down 0.5% in September. The Midwest’s automotive output was up 16.4% in September relative to its year-ago level, and national automotive output was up 9.4%.

The Midwest’s machinery sector production decreased 0.3% in September after moving down 0.2% in August. By contrast, the nation’s machinery production increased 0.3% in September. Regional machinery output was up 8.1% in September from its year-ago level, and national machinery output was up 3.7%.

The region’s steel sector output moved down 0.1% in September, following a 0.9% decrease in the previous month. The nation’s steel output was unchanged in September. Regional steel output was up 8.1% from its September 2011 level, and national steel output was up 5.5%.

The Midwest resource sector’s output increased 0.9% in September after it was unchanged in August. The national resource sector’s output was up 0.5% in September. Production in all five of the regional resource sector’s subsectors (food, wood, paper, chemical, and nonmetallic mineral) increased from August to September. Compared with a year ago, regional resource output was up 2.6% in September, and national resource output was up 1.2%. 

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