Today, the Institute for Supply Management released their latest Report on Business for the manufacturing sector indicating that manufacturing activity improved in November with assessments of many measures increasing.
At 52.7 the purchasing manager’s composite index (PMI) increased 3.74% since October but remained 9.45% below the level seen a year earlier.
Some respondents indicated that business in improving but orders remain weak:
"Business still holding its own. Some growth in margin now that some of the raw materials prices have abated. Oil is pushing $100 so that has not been favorable." (Chemical Products)
"Orders for the remaining two months have increased after an extended 'summer dip' in sales overall. We expect to finish the year approximately 10 percent above 2010." (Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components)
"Seeing a slight slowdown in orders; could be related to the holidays." (Primary Metals)
"Oil exploration seems to be really picking up. Government is permitting again, so business is the busiest we've ever seen." (Computer & Electronic Products)
"The EPS ruling about higher fees for coal-generated electricity can have a huge, negative impact on our business if implemented in January 2012. We are at the peak of our seasonal demand push." (Plastics & Rubber Products)