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Manufacturing (Cont’d from Page 1)
with food-at-home costs jumping 2.6 percent. Over the past 12 months, the consumer prices index has risen 0.4 percent (seasonally adjusted), the slowest year-over-year pace since November 2015.At the same time, core inflation (which excludes food and energy) decreased 0.4 percent in April, the largest monthly de- cline in the history of the data series, which dates to 1947. On a year-over-year basis, core consumer infla- tion has increased 1.4 percent since April 2019, the slowest rate since April 2011. The data reflect the deflationary effects of the COVID-19 outbreak,with higher costs for grocery and medical care items but declines in every other catego- ry except for shelter (which was flat).The outlook is for consumer prices to rise by 0.7 percent in 2020, the slowest pace of growth in five years, with core infla- tion up 1.9 percent this year. Industrial Production: Manufacturing production fell sharply by a record-setting 13.7 percent in April as firms grappled with the COVID-19 outbreak, including closures, reduced activity and significant global supply and demand disruptions. Output in the sector fell to its lowest level since July 1998. Durable and nondu- rable goods production plummeted 19.3 percent and 8.2 percent, respectively, with all 19 major sectors ex- periencing declines.The largest production decreases for the month were jaw-dropping in scale, including motor vehicles and parts (down 71.1 percent), appar- el and leather (down 24.1 percent), aerospace and other transportation equipment (down 21.6 percent), printing and support (down 21.2 percent), textile and product mills (down 20.7 percent), furniture and re- lated products (down 20.6 percent), primary metals (down 20.4 percent) and petroleum and coal prod- ucts (down 18.5 percent), among others. On a year-over-year basis, manufacturing production has declined 18 percent, with durable and nondura- ble goods output down 25.5 percent and 10 percent, respectively. Manufacturing capacity utilization has plummeted from 75.0 percent in February to 70.8 per- cent in March to 61.1 percent in April, an all-time low for a series that dates to 1948. Meanwhile, total industrial production decreased 11.2 percent in April, also the largest monthly decline on record,with mining and utilities production off 6.1 percent and 0.9 percent, respectively.Over the past 12 months, industrial production dropped 15 percent.To- tal capacity utilization has declined from 76.7 percent in February to 73.2 percent in March to 64.9 percent in April, a record low. Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey :There were 320,000 manufacturing job openings in March,
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Flexo Market News May 25, 2020 7
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