The ISM factory index dropped to 52% in September, dropping to its lowest level in six months, but staying above the important 50% level, the Institute for Supply Management announced Monday. Any number above 50% indicates growth, so US manufacturing did experience some expansion last month, despite falling short of economists' expectations of 53%. Norbert Ore, who directs ISM survey, said, "September looks like a good month for manufacturing," but warned that some of his reading indicated "the trend is toward slower growth." One key positive indicator was the price index decreased from 63 to 59, showing an easing of inflation pressures. "Going into the fourth quarter with the type of momentum we have now should be good for economy, with growth likely to stay around present levels. The fourth quarter is seasonally strong for manufacturing," Ore also said.
Sources: WSJ, MarketWatch
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