Recent Updates

  • Thailand: Commercial Bank Assets & Liabilities (Jun)
  • China: PPI, CPI (Jul)
  • Construction PMIs: Ireland, Canada Regional PMI (Jul)
  • Israel: Government Finance (Jul)
  • more updates...

Economy in Brief

U.S. Durable Goods Orders Surge Pre-Coronavirus Outbreak; Orders Excluding Aircraft Ease
by Tom Moeller  March 25, 2020

Manufacturers' orders for durable goods strengthened 1.2% during February before business ground to a halt in March. Despite the m/m improvement, orders remained down 0.1% y/y. A 1.0% decline had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. The y/y orders decline closely matched the 0.5% shortfall in industrial production of durable goods.

Last month's orders included a 0.8% drop (-0.6% y/y) in nondefense capital goods orders excluding aircraft which reversed a 1.0% January increase.

Stronger transportation sector orders led the overall orders increase in February with a 4.6% gain. Orders excluding transportation eased 0.6% (-0.9% y/y) and reversed January's rise. The transportation increase was led by a 1.8% surge (-2.6% y/y) in motor vehicle & parts. Aircraft & parts orders eased m/m.

Orders for electrical equipment & parts rose 1.3% (3.2% y/y). Offsetting this rise was a 0.8% decline (-0.3% y/y) in bookings for computers & electronic products. Also weakening were machinery orders which fell 0.5% (-2.5% y/y). Primary & fabricated metals orders also eased both m/m and y/y.

Shipments of durable goods rose 0.8% (-2.4% y/y) as transportation shipments rose 2.9% (-5.1% y/y). Shipments less transportation eased 0.2% (-1.0% y/y) helped by a 0.7% decline (-1.3% y/y) in nondefense capital goods shipments excluding aircraft.

Unfilled orders for durable products improved 0.1% (-1.7% y/y) following two months of stability.

Durable goods inventories were unchanged (3.7% y/y) last month, although they had been rising steadily through December. These gains were powered by strength in the transportation sector. Inventories less transportation fell 0.2% for a second consecutive month and were down 0.7% y/y.

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 Feb Jan Dec Feb Y/Y % 2019 2018 2017
New Orders (SA, % chg) 1.2 0.1 2.8 -0.1 -1.2 7.9 5.4
    Transportation 4.6 -0.9 8.8 1.5 -4.3 9.8 3.2
  Total Excluding Transportation -0.6 0.6 -0.1 -0.9 0.4 6.9 6.5
    Nondefense Capital Goods Excl. Aircraft -0.8 1.0 -0.8 -0.6 0.9 6.0 6.7
Shipments 0.8 -0.1 -0.2 -2.4 1.2 7.1 4.0
    Nondefense Capital Goods Excl. Aircraft -0.7 1.1 -0.4 -1.3 2.1 6.3 5.6
Unfilled Orders 0.1 0.0 0.0 -1.7 -2.1 3.9 1.9
Inventories 0.0 -0.1 0.3 3.7 4.8 4.8 4.5
close
large image