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By Kevin Kastner
WASHINGTON (MNI) - April industrial production fell by 0.5%, led by
a large reversal in utilities production. There was another decline in
manufacturing production and a rebound in mining production.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the data released
- April industrial production was well below the flat reading
expected by both the Bloomberg and MNI surveys. March industrial
production was revised up to a 0.2% gain from the previously announced
0.1% decline, while February production was revised down sharply to a
0.5% decline from 0.1% gain previous reported.
- Capacity utilization fell to 77.9% from a downward revised 78.5%
in March. The Bloomberg and MNI surveys had expected a reading of 78.7%
- Utilities production fell by 3.5% in April after three straight
gains, with electricity production down 2.6% and natural gas production
down 7.7%. The Federal Reserve noted that temperatures were
warmer-than-normal in April cutting into heating needs, as suggested by
an MNI preview analysis on Tuesday.
- Manufacturing production fell by 0.5% in April, with vehicle
production down 2.6%. Excluding that large decline, manufacturing
production would have been down 0.3% and overall industrial production
would have been down 0.4%. Manufacturing production has not posted a
monthly gain since December.
- Mining production rebounded by 1.6% in April after declines in
each of the previous three months. The rebound came despite falling rig
counts, suggesting refining drove the April increase.
** MNI Washington Bureau: 202-371-2121 **