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May Business Outlook Survey Suggests Slight Decline with Pick Up In Near Future

For release: May 17, 2001
Contact: Marilyn Wimp (215) 574-4197

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia released its Business Outlook Survey for May today. Philadelphia Fed Economic Analyst Timothy Schiller summarized the survey:

"The region's manufacturing sector showed no improvement this month. Current indicators of business conditions suggest a slight decline in overall business activity. New orders and shipments continue to stagnate. Responses to a special question this month indicate that capital spending has been influenced by the decline in manufacturing since the beginning of the year. Despite the current lull in business, manufacturers expect growth to pick up over the next six months."

This survey, which was started in 1968, gathers information on the manufacturing industry in the Third Federal Reserve District covering eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware. Participation in the survey is limited to manufacturing firms with plants in the area with more than 100 employees. The survey asks about the current pace of business in the participants' plants and their future expectations of business.

To arrange an interview, please contact Marilyn Wimp the Bank's media representative at (215) 574-4197. The next Business Outlook Survey will be released at noon, June 21 E.D.T. and will be made available on this Web site and over PR Newswire. The release time change from 10 a.m. to noon is permanent. The aggregate historical data series is also available at http://www.philadelphiafed.org/econ/bos/boshistory.html.

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