Industrial Production Grew at Slower Pace in November

(CN) – Industrial production in the U.S. rose at a slower pace in November, following a hurricane-related surge in October, the Federal Reserve said Friday.

The statistical report showed that the manufacturing sector continues to prosper thanks to robust consumer spending and consistent gains in business investment.

Friday’s report found that total industrial production was driven by a 3 percent increase in oil and gas extraction as activity resumed in the wake of a series of hurricanes impacting the Gulf of Mexico and Gulf coast region.

The latest advance in manufacturing production was also attributed to a widespread increase in the output of durable goods, driven by primary metals.

According to the Fed, production of business equipment rose 0.5 percent in November, while output of construction supplies climbed 0.6 percent. Mining activity also increased, rising 2.0 percent, after a 0.6 percent decrease in October.

Meanwhile utility output fell 1.9 percent in November after rising 2 percent in October, while the production of motor vehicles slowed — gaining only 0.1 percent — after big gains the three previous months.

Consumer goods output dropped 0.4 percent in November, after a 1.2 percent jump in October.

But factory owners are clearly bullish on the future as the capacity utilization at manufacturers climbed to 76.4 percent in November, the highest since the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008.

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