2012 Economic Calendar
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Industrial Production  
Released On 9/14/2012 9:15:00 AM For Aug, 2012
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Production - M/M change0.6 %0.5 %-0.1 %-1.0 % to 0.3 %-1.2 %
Manufacturing - M/M0.5 %0.4 %-0.2 %-0.5 % to 0.2 %-0.7 %
Capacity Utilization Rate - Level79.4 %79.2 %79.2 %78.6 % to 79.5 %78.2 %
cap util - level79.284 index level

Manufacturing weakened in August for industrial production overall, weakness was led by mining and utilities. Overall industrial production fell 1.2 percent, following a 0.5 percent jump in July (originally up 0.6 percent). Analysts expected a 0.1 percent dip for overall production.

By major components, manufacturing declined 0.7 percent, following an increase of 0.4 percent in July (previously estimated at up 0.5 percent). Expectations were for a 0.2 percent dip for the manufacturing component.

Motor vehicles production tugged down on manufacturing, decreasing 4.0 percent in August, following a 2.7 percent rebound in July. But other components were soft as manufacturing excluding motor vehicles dipped 0.4 percent, following a 0.2 percent gain the prior month.

But weakness was greatest outside of manufacturing. In August, mining output fell 1.8 percent after a 1.0 percent gain in July. The August drop was partially tied to hurricane related shutdowns in the oil industry. Utilities output decreased 3.6 percent after a 1.3 percent gain in July.

Overall capacity utilization slipped to 78.2 percent from 79.2 percent in July. The consensus forecast 79.2 percent.

The bottom line is that non-manufacturing components were mainly behind the sharp drop in overall industrial production. But manufacturing also has lost steam.

Consensus Outlook
Industrial production jumped 0.6 percent in July after a 0.1 percent rise in June. By major components, manufacturing advanced 0.5 percent, following an increase of 0.5 percent in June. Motor vehicles production supported the manufacturing gain, increasing 3.3 percent in July, following a 1.9 percent rebound in June. Manufacturing excluding motor vehicles posted a 0.2 percent rise, following a 0.4 percent boost the prior month. In July, mining output advanced 1.2 percent, following a 0.5 percent increase in June. Utilities output rebounded 1.3 percent after declining 3.3 percent the prior month. Overall capacity utilization rose to 79.3 percent from 78.9 percent in June. Looking ahead, manufacturing hours for production workers declined 0.4 percent, indicating that the manufacturing component of industrial production will be down for August.

The Federal Reserve's monthly index of industrial production and the related capacity indexes and capacity utilization rates cover manufacturing, mining, and electric and gas utilities. The industrial sector, together with construction, accounts for the bulk of the variation in national output over the course of the business cycle. The production index measures real output and is expressed as a percentage of real output in a base year, currently 2012. The capacity index, which is an estimate of sustainable potential output, is also expressed as a percentage of actual output in 2012. The rate of capacity utilization equals the seasonally adjusted output index expressed as a percentage of the related capacity index.

The index of industrial production is available nationally by market and industry groupings. The major groupings are comprised of final products (such as consumer goods, business equipment and construction supplies), intermediate products and materials. The industry groupings are manufacturing (further subdivided into durable and nondurable goods), mining and utilities. The capacity utilization rate -- reflecting the resource utilization of the nation's output facilities -- is available for the same market and industry groupings.

Industrial production was also revised to NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) in the early 2000s. Unlike other economic series that lost much historical data prior to 1992, the Federal Reserve Board was able to reconstruct historical data that go back more than 30 years.  Why Investors Care
The industrial sector accounts for less than 20 percent of GDP. Yet, it creates much of the cyclical variability in the economy.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
The capacity utilization rate reflects the limits to operating the nation's factories, mines and utilities. In the past, supply bottlenecks created inflationary pressures as the utilization rate hit 84 to 85 percent.
Data Source: Haver Analytics

2012 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/182/153/164/175/166/157/178/159/1410/1611/1612/14
Release For: DecJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNov

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