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Manufacturers Report Increased Activity

For release: August 21, 2003, at noon.
Contact: Kathy Woodbury, (215) 574-4119

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia today released its Business Outlook Survey for August. Activity in the region's manufacturing sector increased, with indexes for general activity, new orders, and shipments improving. Survey participants were asked about summer plant shutdowns.

Philadelphia Federal Reserve Senior Economic Analyst Mike Trebing summarized the survey:

“The region’s manufacturing sector showed significant improvement this month. For the third consecutive month, firms reported an increase in overall business activity. Indexes for new orders and shipments also indicated increases for the second consecutive month. However, firms polled say employment in factories was lower this month than last. According to the future indicators, a majority of manufacturing executives anticipate growth in the industry 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 Kathy Woodbury, the Bank's assistant media adviser, at (215) 574-4119. The next Business Outlook Survey will be released September 18, 2003, at noon and will be made available on this web site and over PR Newswire.

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