Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

ISM manufacturing activity surges

By Julianne Pepitone, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- While everyone's been worried about a double-dip recession, the manufacturing sector has been on a quiet tear, expanding in August for the 13th straight month, the Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday.

Economist Paul Ashworth of Capital Economics called the report "a rare piece of good news."

The manufacturing index hit 56.3 in August, up from July and well ahead of expectations. Any reading above 50 signals growth; a drop below 41.2 is associated with a recession in the broader economy.

In a research note, Ashworth said he was "worried about an even bigger drop" than the predictions because regional manufacturing surveys showed "sharp deterioration" in August.

Economist Ian Shepherdson of High Frequency Economics was also worried about trends in the sector. In a research note, Shepherdson said the report was "a very big and pleasant surprise," but he warned the index has further to fall and investors should "enjoy this while it lasts."

Stocks got a boost after the report's release, with the Dow index (INDU) surging 230 points.

China's manufacturing sector also picked up in August, according to a pair of reports released earlier Wednesday, calming fears about the pace of that country's growth. To top of page

Search for Jobs

Index Last Change % Change
Dow 20,719.68 58.38 0.28%
Nasdaq 5,834.46 12.82 0.22%
S&P 500 2,353.49 5.04 0.21%
Treasuries 2.42 0.02 0.92%
Data as of 2:52pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 23.20 0.26 1.16%
Ford Motor Co 11.65 -0.12 -1.02%
Advanced Micro Devic... 13.96 -0.13 -0.96%
Chesapeake Energy Co... 5.15 0.15 3.00%
Micron Technology In... 26.38 0.32 1.23%
Data as of 2:37pm ET
Sponsors

Sections

Valeant paid CEO Joseph Papa $63 million last year despite investigations, billions of dollars of losses and a stock plunge of nearly 90%. More

If President Trump and the Republicans fail to push repeal-and-replace across the finish line, in either the House or the Senate, there will be implications for their tax reform agenda. More

The Federal Communications Commission voted Thursday to approve a proposed rule that would make it easier for phone companies to crack down on robocalls. More

Your credit score plays a major role in your personal finances. The better the score, the better it is for your wallet. Here's how to help get it above the 800 mark. More