Manufacturing output increases, above year-earlier level

Manufacturing output increased by 0.1 percent in August, and is 3.3 percent above its year-earlier level, according to a Federal Reserve report

Industrial production decreased by 0.2 percent last month. Manufacturing output increased by a small margin after growing 0.6 percent in July. The index for durable manufacturing was unchanged. Gains of at least 1 percent were seen in machinery, computer and electronic products, aerospace and miscellaneous transportation equipment, and miscellaneous manufacturing. The index for nondurable manufacturing increased by 0.2 percent, and publishing and logging manufacturing slightly decreased.

Total industrial production in August, at 104.5 percent of its 2017 average, was 3.7 percent above its year-earlier level. Capacity utilization dropped 0.2 percentage point in August to 80 percent, 0.4 percentage points above its long-term average. Capacity utilization for manufacturing remained at 79.6 percent in August, 1.4 percentage points above its long-run average. The operating rate for mining fell 0.3 percentage points to 88.1 percent.

 The operating rate for utilities fell 1.9 percentage points to 72.8 percent. Losses were seen in consumer goods, construction supplies and materials categories, while gains were posted in business equipment, defense and space equipment and business supplies. 

Capacity utilization for mining was nearly 2 percentage points above its long-run average, but the rate for utilities was significantly under its long-term average. Mining output remained the same in August after five consecutive monthly gains.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there were $683.3 billion in retail and food services sales in August, a 0.3 percent increase from July and 9.1 percent above August 2021. Total sales from June through August were 9.3 percent higher from the same period in 2021. Gas station sales were up 29 percent from 12 months ago, while nonstore retailer sales increased 11.2 percent.