Manufacturing Pace in U.S. Hit 2-Year Peak in August

 Manufacturing-Pace-in-U.S.-Hit-2-Year-Peak-in-August.The good news keeps on coming–stronger-than-expected data on U.S. manufacturing and construction spending in August suggests that the American economy is slowly gaining traction.

According to TIME Business & Money, the Institute for Supply Management’s “manufacturing index rose to 55.7 in August from 55.4 in July. That topped the index’s 12-month average of 52.”

Here’s a more specific breakdown of some of the numbers from the Institute for Supply Management:

  • The manufacturing index rose to 55.7 in August from 55.4 in July–a reading above 50 indicates growth.
  • A gauge of new orders rose nearly five points to 63.2, the highest level in more than two years.
  • Production reached its highest level in 2½ years.
  • The ISM’s survey found broad-based growth, with 15 out of 18 industries reporting expansion and only one reporting contraction, suggesting that factory production could accelerate this year.
  • The reading for new orders minus inventories, a way to extrapolate so-called final demand, marked its highest in more than three years, as well.

These are some good numbers. Manufacturing production reached its highest level in 2.5 years, and U.S. factories expanded last month at the fastest pace since June 2011.

At a time when some people were starting to question the growth of manufacturing in the U.S., numbers from last month’s report are a good sign for manufacturers all around the country. It looks like American manufacturing is really doing well.

Around the world, China’s services sector grew steadily in August (after China’s long economic downturn), and European factory data pointed to growth, too. In that sense, the global economy is starting to look up, too.

We can only hope that we continue to see this kind of growth as we come closer and closer to Manufacturing Day (and month) in October. But until then, we’re pretty content with the way that things are looking now.

Image credit: Chris Barry via Reuters