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Survey Shows Increase in Manufacturing Activity

For release: November 20, 2003, at Noon
Contact: Marilyn Wimp at (215) 574-4197

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia today released its Business Outlook Survey for November. Activity in the region's manufacturing sector continues to expand, according to the participating firms. The manufacturers remain optimistic about activity over the next six months. In the special questions, the firms were asked about foreign competition and overseas outsourcing.

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

"Manufacturing in the region is showing continued signs of expansion. Although indexes for general activity, new orders, and shipments are somewhat lower this month than last, they remain at relatively high levels. Manufacturing executives are still optimistic about growth over the next six months, and many future indicators remain near their highest readings in more than 10 years."

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 advisor, at (215) 574-4197. The next Business Outlook Survey will be released December 18, 2003, at noon and will be made available on this web site and over PR Newswire. The aggregate historical data series is also available on the Bank's web site.

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