Wall Street Journal (01/04/16) Jeffrey Sparshott
The Institute for Supply Management’s gauge of manufacturing activity dropped from 48.6 in November to 48.2 in December, with readings under 50 denoting contraction in the sector. December’s reading was the lowest since the recession ended and marked the first consecutive months of contraction since 2009.
The report prompted JPMorgan Chase to downgrade its forecast for fourth-quarter gross domestic product growth from 2% to 1%, but JPMorgan Chase economist Michael Feroli expects growth of 2.25% for the first quarter of 2016. Meanwhile, the ISM report showed that a measure of export demand expanded for the first time since April, but that was overshadowed by contractions in new orders, production, and employment.