US industrial output falls beyond estimates in March
A significant decrease in utilities output was blamed for the country’s weaker industrial output, which dipped 5.9% in March following a 5.7% increase in February. However, US manufacturing output increased 0.1% in March, rising for the first time since November 2014.
In first quarter of this year, industrial output posted an annual decrease of 1%, posting the first decline on a quarterly basis since the second quarter of 2009 due to lower production in oil and gas drilling and servicing.
Meanwhile, the report also showed that the country’s capacity utilization rate declined to 78.4% in March from 79% in the previous month. Economists’ initial estimated called for a decrease to 78.7%. Capacity utilization in the utilities sector was also down to 80% from 85.1% while capacity utilization in the mining sector declined to 84.4% in March from 85.4% in the previous month. Capacity utilization in the manufacturing sector, however, was reported unchanged at 77.1%.
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