Manufacturing sales edged down 0.2% in January to $48.0 billion, the fourth decline in five months. Sales in January were down in the transportation equipment industry as well as the petroleum and coal product industry. Overall, 7 of 21 industries posted lower sales in January, representing approximately 52% of the manufacturing sector.
Durable goods sales declined 0.7% to $24.1 billion, while non-durable goods sales rose 0.3% to $23.9 billion.
Constant dollar sales fell 0.4% in January, indicating that the decline in manufactured goods sold was a result of lower volumes.
Unfilled orders increased 5.8% to $69.0 billion in January, the highest level since November 2008 ($69.3 billion). The gain stemmed almost entirely from higher unfilled orders in the aerospace product and parts industry. Unfilled orders are a stock of orders that will contribute to future sales assuming that they are not cancelled.
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