2017 Economic Calendar
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Durable Goods Orders  
Released On 1/27/2017 8:30:00 AM For Dec, 2016
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
New Orders - M/M change-4.6 %-4.8 %2.6 %1.5 % to 7.0 %-0.4 %
New Orders - Yr/Yr Change-1.9 %1.6 %
Ex-transportation - M/M0.5 %1.0 %0.5 %0.2 % to 0.8 %0.5 %
Ex-transportation - Yr/Yr1.8 %2.5 %3.5 %
Core capital goods - M/M change0.9 %1.5 %0.8 %
Core capital goods - Yr/Yr-3.2 %-2.3 %2.8 %

Highlights
Civilian aircraft is the usual culprit behind volatility in the durable goods report but not in December, as defense aircraft makes a second straight appearance. A 64 percent downswing in orders for defense aircraft reversed a similar upswing in November and pulled down total durable goods to a much lower-than-expected 0.4 percent decline in December. But when excluding transportation equipment, orders actually hit the consensus at plus 0.5 percent.

The strength in the report is centered in capital goods where core orders (nondefense ex-aircraft) posted a strong 0.8 percent gain with November's increase revised 6 tenths higher to 1.5 percent. These gains underscore the increase in the business investment component in this morning's fourth-quarter GDP report and point to momentum for this closely watched area going into the first quarter.

A significant negative in the report is a 0.6 percent decline in unfilled orders which continue to shrink. Lack of work to do is a negative for employment. Total shipments were strong in December at 1.4 percent with core capital goods also strong at 1.0 percent.

Hard data in sum on the factory sector have not been favorable showing a fizzle, not a burst, at year end. But there are solid hints of strength ahead in this report as well as in regional manufacturing reports which have been on the rise.

Recent History Of This Indicator
Durable goods orders have swung very sharply the last two months, down 4.6 percent in November following a 4.8 percent rise in October. Ex-transportation orders, which strip out monthly swings in aircraft, have been coming alive, up 0.5 percent and up 0.9 percent the last two reports. Core capital goods orders (nondefense ex-aircraft) showed significant strength in November, up 0.9 percent, but on trend have not been strong. The Econoday consensus for durables orders is a swing higher of 2.6 percent with ex-transportation showing another month of consistent strength at 0.5 percent.

Definition
Durable goods orders reflect the new orders placed with domestic manufacturers for immediate and future delivery of factory hard goods. The first release, the advance, provides an early estimate of durable goods orders. About two weeks later, more complete and revised data are available in the factory orders report. The data for the previous month are usually revised a second time upon the release of the new month's data.

Durable goods orders are available nationally by both industry and market categories. A new order is accompanied by a legally binding agreement to purchase for immediate or future delivery. Advance durable goods orders no longer include data on semiconductors since semiconductor manufacturers stopped releasing this information to the Census Bureau.

The advance durable goods report also contains information on shipments, unfilled orders and inventories. Shipments represent deliveries made, valued at net selling price after discounts and allowances, excluding freight charges and excise taxes. Unfilled orders are those received but not yet delivered.

In 2001, the Census Bureau shifted from the standard industrial classification (SIC) system to the North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS). This caused some realignment of major industry classifications. Given the significant revisions incurred, the historical data now begin in 1992.
 Why Investors Care
 
[Chart]
Monthly fluctuations in durable goods orders are frequent and large and skew the underlying trend in the data. In fact, even the yearly change must be viewed carefully because of the volatility in this series.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 
 

2017 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/272/273/244/275/266/267/278/259/2710/2511/2212/22
Release For: DecJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNov
 


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