At 52.8 in September, the Markit Flash U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) suggested a modest improvement in manufacturing business conditions. The flash PMI index, which is based on approximately 85% of usual monthly survey replies, was down from 53.1 in August, and indicated that the rate of growth was the weakest since June.
Manufacturing output increased at a solid rate in September. Moreover, the rate of growth was the fastest since March, having accelerated from a ten-month low in August. Firms that raised production often attributed this to higher new orders.
The volume of new orders received by manufacturers continued to rise during September. However, the rate of increase was modest and the weakest in five months. The slower rate of total new order growth partly reflected a renewed contraction in exports.