Richmond Manufacturing Index Data Suggests Economic Recovery

RICHMOND FEDERAL RESERVE — In May, the seasonally adjusted manufacturing index—our broadest measure of manufacturing activity—jumped to 4 from April’s reading of -9 (see chart above). Among the index’s components, shipments gained twelve points to 9, new orders rose twelve points to finish at 10, and the jobs index advanced fourteen points to end at -12.

MP: Signalling the end of the 2001 recession, the economy was in full recovery when the Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index was above zero by early 2002 (see chart above). The index is now above zero for the first time in more than a year, suggesting possibly that the Richmond Fed region, if not the rest of the country, is now in recovery.

About Mark J. Perry 262 Articles

Affiliation: University of Michigan

Dr. Mark J. Perry is a professor of economics and finance in the School of Management at the Flint campus of the University of Michigan.

He holds two graduate degrees in economics (M.A. and Ph.D.) from George Mason University in Washington, D.C. and an MBA degree in finance from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.

Since 1997, Professor Perry has been a member of the Board of Scholars for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a nonpartisan research and public policy institute in Michigan.

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