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Richmond Fed: Manufacturing Activity Soft in April

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond (04/28/15)

Manufacturing activity remained soft in April, according to the most recent survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. The composite index for manufacturing rose to a reading of -3 following March’s reading of -8. The index for shipments and the index for new orders gained seven points in April; both indicators finished at -6.

Manufacturing employment grew mildly in April, up one point to 7. The average work week lengthened, and the index rose eight points to 4. The average wage index added one point and finished at 9. Manufacturers anticipate steady growth in hiring in the months ahead. However, that index finished eight points below last month’s gauge at a reading of 15. Additionally, the index for expected average wages lost three points to end at 28, while the index for the expected average work week gained four points to end at 12.