The Institute for Supply Management reported August 2 that its Manufacturing PMI fell 1.1 points to 59.1% in July. The reading indicates that U.S. manufacturing continued to grow, albeit at a slower rate than it had in June. While the manufacturing sector has grown now for fourteen months running, this is the second month the rate of growth has slowed.
Surveyed manufacturing executives reported similar issues as previous months, including June: Very strong demand, but serious difficulty in filling it. Executives in almost all major manufacturing industries reported a combination of limited supplies and labor.
The ISM’s production index fell 2.4 points to 58.4% while its new orders index dropped by 1.1 to 64.9%, indicating that both—like the overall manufacturing PMI—are growing at a slower rate than previously. In a bright spot, the employment index rose 3 points to 52.9%, recovering from June, when it fell to 49.9% indicating contraction in manufacturing employment.