Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas (06/29/2015)
Texas factory activity declined again in June, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index rose to -6.5 but remained in negative territory, suggesting a fourth consecutive month of contracting output. A similar pattern was seen among other measures of current manufacturing activity in June. The capacity utilization index increased to -6.1 and the shipments index increased to -8.8. These negative index levels indicate continued contraction, but the upward movement this month suggests the pace of decline slowed.
Perceptions of broader business conditions worsened further, although not as sharply in June as in prior months. The general business activity index jumped nearly 14 points to -7, its highest reading since January. The company outlook index moved to -7.4, up from -10.5 last month. Labor market indicators reflected slight employment declines and shorter workweeks. The June employment index was negative for a second month in a row but rose seven points to -1.2. Fourteen percent of firms reported net hiring, compared with 15% reporting net layoffs. The hours worked index inched up from -11.6 to -10.7.