October 3, 2011 - Manufacturing Accelerates
U.S. manufacturing unexpectedly accelerated in September as production picked up, easing concern of a slump in the industry that led the economic recovery. The Institute for Supply Management’s factory index climbed to 51.6 last month from 50.6 in August, the Tempe, Arizona-based group’s data today. A level of 50 is the dividing line between growth and contraction. Economists forecast the measure to fall to 50.5, (according to the median projection in a Bloomberg News survey). A pickup in manufacturing that accounts for about 12 percent of the economy may have been helped by an easing of supply constraints following the earthquake in Japan earlier this year. In an effort to provide a boost for the recovery at the same time concerns of a European sovereign debt default roil financial markets, the Federal Reserve last month announced another round of unconventional policy.