factory manufacturingU.S. factory activity slowed in July, according to the Institute for Supply Management, but the decline was less than economists had expected. The manufacturing index dipped to 55.5, from a revised 56.2 in June. A Bloomberg survey had expected the manufacturing index to dip to 54.0. The index was at 59.7 in May and 60.4 in April.

Two key components of the index -- employment and prices paid -- rose in July. The month also marked the 12th consecutive month manufacturing activity has expanded. Readings above 50 indicate an expansion; under 50, a contraction.

Factories Still Hiring

In July, the employment component rose to 58.6 in July from 57.8 in June -- an increase that indicates that the roughly half-year trend of job growth in the nation's manufacturing sector continued this summer.

Also, the prices component inched slightly higher to 57.5 in July from 57.0 in June. Although the prices gain was small, the fact that it rose suggests price softness is limited -- an encouraging development, given economists' growing concern about deflation.

In addition, the closely watched new orders component slumped to 53.5 in July from 58.5, but the component fell less than expected and remains above the key 50 expansion/contraction demarcation line. This suggests a continued increase in demand in the pipeline.

A Slightly Slower Factory Expansion

Norbert J. Ore, chairman of the ISM's Manufacturing Business Survey Committee, said the expansion continued in the nation's factory sector this summer, albeit at a slightly slower pace.

"Manufacturing continued to grow during July, but at a slightly slower rate than in June. Employment, supplier deliveries and inventories improved during the month and reduced the impact of a month-over-month deceleration in new orders and production," Ore said in a statement. He added, "July marks 12 consecutive months of growth in manufacturing, and indications are that demand is still quite strong in 10 of 18 industries. The prices that manufacturers paid for their inputs were slightly higher but stable, with only a few items on the short supply list."

Respondents to the ISM's July survey confirmed an ongoing manufacturing expansion, but one that also shows that conditions have cooled slightly.

"Business in July was strong, the best month since October" (fabricated metal products sector). "Slow economy has killed sales for new equipment orders (machinery sector). "Business continues to be sluggish and has fallen slightly as the economic ills continue" (non-metallic mineral products sector).

After July's less-than-expected dip in the manufacturing index, the most compelling stats in the July report are the readings for employment and prices paid. The employment component points to continued hiring by the nation's factories -- which is good news for a U.S. economy that needs all of the new jobs it can get. Further, the rise in the prices component indicates, at least as of this summer, that pricing power remains adequate in the factory sector -- a welcome sight for a nation trying to avoid deflation.

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LaharlD2

The Democrats take Republican's orders. I think it's time to be disgusted by both. Neither are mostly for the poor or low class...so where is the balance? More catering the rich.

August 02 2010 at 11:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

Raspberrieso, Nope, just wondering why intelligent people ignore the truth and fall for the massive amount of Republican LIES.

August 02 2010 at 11:47 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

History class time: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Association_for_the_Advancement_of_Colored_People

August 02 2010 at 11:45 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

Where your tax money is going under the Republicans:

$9,000,000,000 disapeared in Iraq, this was the promised oil funds from Iraq to GWB and Company for 'Democratizing' them.

$53,000,000,000 of taxpayers money to replace schools, roads, bridges, government buildings in Iraq destroyed by the war

$60,000,000,000 of taxpayers money to rebuild Afghanistan

35% of our tax money goes to our military, which is protecting wealthy countries all over the world.

$950,000,000 to over 2,200 companies for 'Homeland Security'

--------------------

BP, is taking a $17,000,000,000 tax deduction off their USA tax liability, the reason:

BP took illegal shortcuts to save $250,000 per day in cost, and destroyed the Gulf of Mexico and put tens of thousands of Americans out of work and out of business.

They have been ordered to pay for the cleanup, estimated at $64,000,000,000 and they are attempting to take this as a deduction from their USA income tax as a 'Loss'.

EXXON got Billions of taxpayers money from the USA, even thought they have still not paid the Alaska fines for that oil spill.

ADM and other big agriculture corporations get trillions of dollars from your tax money, even though they too make billions in profits each year growing corn, wheat, tobaco, etc.

Talk about the Screwing of America.

August 02 2010 at 11:24 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
tomgold125

Fox news gives both sides of a view point. Some people don't care
about seeing both view points. It's like the NAACP, this organization
was co-founded by liberal whites and to this day will not allow conservative
blacks to join.

August 02 2010 at 11:23 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

FOX news in Philadelphia today cut down Major Nutter for his attempts to balance the city budget; Nutter has cut $47 million in expenses, let 800 city workers retire without replacements being added, collected over $63 million in back property and business taxes owed the city, and is expected to collect over $150 million in back traffic fines owed the city. The major is closing on a daily basis some fire stations, a move that is normally done for training anyway. But, FOX news praised New Jersey's governor Cristy for his budget cutting attempts that will reduce the state's expenses by over 20%; what is NOT being told is the 20% comes from the School budgets, the Police and Fire fighter budgets, the Libraries, the bridge and road inprovements, and other needed services. NO Attempt to collect the billions of past due business taxes or to collect traffic fines etc, are being made. Thus who is doing the better job, Nutter or Christy? Nutter is outstanding.

August 02 2010 at 11:23 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

The republicans are being told by their leaders that drug lords are waging WAR on our borders and in our cities. This is partly true, we are the USERS of the DRUGS and therefore, WE are in essence fighting ourselves. Also, the drugs are coming from Afghanistan and everytime WE buy illegal drugs WE are funding the enemy that is killing OUR children and relatives. Who is the indirect cause of this, GHWB during his administration provided farming equipment to the Afghanistan criminals that are growing the dope.

August 02 2010 at 11:23 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to mac2jr's comment
dterraman

wow, in agreement.....bushy helped them to start the poppy, and obammy gives them the lives of our young to protect the poppy....

August 03 2010 at 6:03 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

The Republicans are being told by their leaders that we need to build fences along our borders to keep out the 'illegals', but what they are not being told is that their beloved corporate world are the ones hiring the illegals over them; they do not want to pay you a living wage or health care or other social benefits, they want the profits for their big homes, big cars, big boats, big vacations, big investments, etc., and YOU are paying for it.

August 02 2010 at 11:23 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

Republicans were told by their leaders that we needed to spend billions of our USA tax dollars to Pakistan in order to keep peace there; yet the Pakistan government during the GWB nine year WAR was aiding the enemy with your tax dollars. It is time to STOP and GET OUT of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

August 02 2010 at 11:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mac2jr

Republicans have been lied to by their leaders about Iraq; billions of USA tax dollars have been poured into the country, but nothing is happening to make the country better; the 2003 GWB Lie that we are going to rebuild the country is failing; the 2003 GWB lie that we will be paid back from the oil revenues failed, we are billions in the hole and over $9 billion is missing, but China and other countries are now receiving oil field leases from the NEW IRAQ government

August 02 2010 at 11:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply