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Manufacturers Report Increased Business Activity

For release: April 21, 2005 at noon
Contact: Kathy Dibling, 215-574-4119

Philadelphia, Pa. - The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia today released April’s Business Outlook Survey. The manufacturers surveyed reported that activity in the region’s sector continues to expand. Most indicators point to somewhat faster growth than last month. This month the participants were asked to compare their current capacity utilization rate to that of six months ago.

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

Respondents to April’s Business Outlook Survey reported that manufacturing in the region is continuing to grow. Indicators for general activity, new orders, shipments, and employment were higher than in March. Price pressures increased this month: over half of the firms reported higher prices for inputs, and one-third reported higher prices for their own manufactured goods. Most indicators reflecting the outlook for the next six months moderated slightly.

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 Dibling, the Bank's assistant media representative, at (215) 574-4119. The next Business Outlook Survey will be released at noon on May 19, 2005, and will be made available on our web site at www.philadelphiafed.org and over PR Newswire. The aggregate historical data series is also available on the Bank's web site.

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