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Manufacturers Continue To See Growth

For release: September 16, 2004 at noon
Contact: Kathy Dibling, 215-574-4119

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia today released the September Business Outlook Survey. Although the current activity indicator fell below last month's reading, survey participants report continued expansion in the region's manufacturing sector. In the special question, firms were asked about the impact of special depreciation allowances on spending for capital equipment.

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

"Respondents to this month's Business Outlook Survey reported that growth in the region's manufacturing sector is continuing. While some of our survey's current indicators, such as general activity and shipments, suggest modest growth, other indicators, such as new orders and employment, suggest a sustained pace of growth. Almost 60 percent of the manufacturers reported increases in prices for inputs this month, and almost 40 percent reported increases in prices for their own manufactured goods. Manufacturing executives remain optimistic about continued growth in their sector, but most of the six-month-ahead indicators fell this month."

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, contact Kathy Dibling, the Bank's assistant media advisor, at (215) 574-4119. The next Business Outlook Survey will be released Thursday, October 21, 2004, at noon and will be made available on this web site and over PR Newswire. The annual revisions of historical data can be found at http://www.philadelphiafed.org/econ/bos/boshistory.html.

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