Business activity in New York State declined slightly this month, according to rms responding to the August 2016 Empire State Manufacturing Survey.
The headline general business conditions index fell ve points to -4.2. e new orders index remained near zero, a sign that orders were little changed, while the shipments index climbed eight points to 9.0, indicating that shipments rose.
Labor market indicators pointed to little change in employment levels and hours worked. e prices paid index edged down to 15.5, suggesting that input price increases remained moder- ate, and at 2.1, the prices received index re ected a minute increase in selling prices. Forward-looking indicators sug- gested that rms expected conditions to improve over the next six months, although the level of optimism dimin- ished for a second consecutive month.
Business Activity Wanes
Manufacturing rms in New York State reported a slight weakening of business activity in August. e gen- eral business conditions index moved lower for a second consecutive month, falling ve points to -4.2.
Twenty-six percent of respondents reported that conditions had improved over the month, while 30 percent reported that conditions had worsened.
The new orders index rose three points to 1.0, suggesting that orders were little changed.
The shipments index advanced eight points to 9.0, pointing to an increase in shipments.
The unfilled orders index inched up to -9.3. e delivery time index fell to -4.1, signaling shorter delivery times, and the inventories index remained negative at -4.1, evidence that inventory levels were somewhat lower.
Labor Market Steadies
The employment index climbed three points to -1.0, indicating that employment levels were little changed, and the average workweek index rose to 2.1, pointing to a slight increase in hours worked.
The prices paid index slipped three points but, at 15.5, indicated that input prices continued to rise at a moderate pace.
The prices received index, at 2.1, suggested that selling prices moved slightly higher.