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Chicago Purchasing Managers Index rose 2.6 points to 48.9 in December


The Chicago Business BarometerTM, produced with MNI, rose 2.6 points in December, hitting a four-month high of 48.9.

Business sentiment dropped by 1.2 points to 46.2 in Q4, marking the lowest quarterly reading since Q2 2009. The index was below the 50-mark for the second successive quarter.

Among the main five categories, Supplier Deliveries and Production led the increase, rising to 55.4 and 47.2 respectively.

Production gain 4.9 points to 47.2, hitting the highest level since August. However, demand slowed in December, indicated by a marginal decline to 49.1 in New Orders after November’s reading of 49.4.

After dropping to an almost four-year low in October, Order Backlogs picked up in November and increased further in December, leaving the index at a three month high of 46.2. However, Order Backlogs saw the largest quarterly decline, falling to 41.4.

Inventories remained in contraction for the fifth consecutive month in December. Nevertheless, the index strengthened by 4.4 points to 47.4.

While Employment cooled to 47.4 in December, showing the largest monthly decline, it also scored the biggest quarterly gain, up by 11.1% to 48.9.

Supplier Delivery times increased by 5.1 points to 55.4 and it is the only component among the main five remaining above the 50-mark.

Prices at the factory gate jumped 9.2% to 58.4 in December, hitting the highest level since August.

December’s special question asked, “What percent of your firm’s 2020 Capital Budget plan is focused on labor productivity?”. The majority (50%) are planning less than 5% of their capital budget on labor productivity, while 26.2% will spend more than 5% and 23.8% more than 10%.






Posted: December 30, 2019 Monday 09:45 AM




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