8 ISM industries post growth, reflect positive business conditions

The United States Institute for Supply Management (ISM) published the latest Non-Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) today, which showed eight industries reported growth in January amid stable business conditions.

Anthony Nieves, CPSM, C.P.M., CFPM, ISM Non-Manufacturing Business Survey Committee’s chair said the Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI) posted a 56.7 percent growth in January, which was slightly higher compared to December’s 56.5 percent reading. This was the 60th consecutive month that economic activity grew in the non-manufacturing sector. Nieves noted positive comments from respondents during interviews: “Comments from respondents vary by industry and company; however, they are mostly positive and/or reflect stability about business conditions.”

The eight non-manufacturing industries which reported growth include (in particular order) Accommodation & Food Services; Finance & Insurance; Management of Companies & Support Services; Public Administration; Wholesale Trade; Information; Health Care & Social Assistance; and Retail Trade. Meanwhile, there were eight industries that contracted, such as (in particular order) Mining; Arts, Entertainment & Recreation; Construction; Other Services; Real Estate, Rental & Leasing; Professional, Scientific & Technical Services; Educational Services; and Transportation & Warehousing.

The Non-Manufacturing Business Activity Index rose to 61.5 percent, its 66th consecutive monthly growth. The New Orders Index came in at 59.5 percent, slightly better than December’s reading. The Employment Index eased 4.1 percentage points to 51.6 percent, yet indicated its eleventh consecutive monthly advance. The Prices Index declined to 45.5 percent from December’s 49.8 percent.

Some of the recorded respondent comments include: “Mild winter has had a good effect on sales. Overall sales are up 2% from last year. Fuel prices are down which has reduced costs. Government mandates on healthcare and minimum wage are still a concern.” (for the Accommodation & Food Services industry);  “Start of the year is off to a great start. We remain cautiously optimistic. Lower fuel prices show strong local, regional and national economic activity.” (Professional, Scientific & Technical Services industry); and “General business activity remains consistent with past months; new projects/products continue to develop.” (Wholesale Trade industry)

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