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Economy in Brief

U.S. Durable Goods Orders Soar With Aircraft Bookings
by Tom Moeller  August 26, 2014

New orders for durable goods surged 22.6% last month (33.8% y/y) following a 2.7% June gain, revised from 0.7%. A 5.5% rise had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. The increase reflected a 318% jump (474% y/y) in civilian aircraft orders which sparked a nearly two-thirds rise in nondefense capital goods orders. Bookings for capital goods excluding aircraft fell 0.5% (+8.3% y/y) but that followed a 5.4% jump, revised from 1.4%. Elsewhere in the transportation sector, orders for motor vehicles & parts increased 10.2% (15.0% y/y), the most since August 2009, following a 1.3% decline.

In most other sectors, new orders stuttered. Electrical equipment orders fell 3.7% (+3.2% y/y) after a 5.9% increase. Machinery orders declined 1.6% (+8.1% y/y) following a 4.9% jump. Orders for computers & electronic products were off 1.2% (+4.2% y/y) after a 4.0% increase. This decline reflected a 6.9% decrease (+16.6% y/y) in orders for computers which offset a 9.9% rise (-2.7% y/y) in communication equipment. Primary metals orders slipped 0.3% (+9.3% y/y) on the heels of a 1.9% jump.

Shipments of durable goods gained 3.3% (8.9% y/y) following a 1.2% increase. Shipments excluding transportation firmed 1.4% (7.5% y/y) following a 1.1% rise. Order backlogs gained 5.4% (12.3% y/y) following a 1.0% increase. Inventory building continued with a 0.5% (6.0% y/y) rise for the second consecutive month.

The durable goods figures are available in Haver's USECON database. The Action Economics consensus forecast figure is in the AS1REPNA database.

Durable Goods NAICS Classification Jul Jun May Y/Y 2013 2012 2011
New Orders (SA, %) 22.6 2.7 -0.9 33.8 5.2 4.1 11.0
  Transportation 74.2 2.1 -2.6 97.1 7.9 8.9 14.9
Total Excluding Transportation -0.8 3.0 -0.1 6.6 4.0 2.1 9.5
  Nondefense Capital Goods 60.8 5.1 -2.3 78.6 8.7 3.7 15.3
    Excluding Aircraft -0.5 5.4 -1.4 8.3 5.0 2.1 11.6
Shipments 3.3 1.2 -0.0 8.9 3.7 6.4 9.4
Inventories 0.5 0.5 1.0 6.0 3.8 4.5 10.8
Unfilled Orders 5.4 1.0 0.7 12.3 7.0 3.6 10.0
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