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Weekly Economic Commentary


Industrial Production - Autos Lift Factory Production in Q3

October 17, 2011

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Industrial production increased 0.2% in September after a steady reading during the prior month. The estimate of industrial production for August was revised down to unchanged from a 0.2% increase. Utilities production fell 1.8% in September after a 2.9% decline in the prior month. Factory production, which excludes utilities and mining, moved up 0.4% in September after a downwardly revised 0.3% increase in the prior month. Auto output rose 0.7% in September, putting the annualized third quarter increase at 21.3%. By contrast, factory output excluding autos increased 0.3% in September, which works out to a 3.3% annualized gain in the third quarter. The operating rate of the nation’s industries stood at 77.4% in September.

dEC 1017 1dEC 1017 2dEC 1017 2Despite the contribution of the auto sector in the third quarter, the recent trend of factory production, with and without auto sector, appears to have settled around a moderate momentum (see Chart 3).

dEC 1017 3

The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of The Northern Trust Company. The Northern Trust Company does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of information contained herein, such information is subject to change and is not intended to influence your investment decisions.