A Key Manufacturing Gauge Just Saw Its Biggest One-Month Decline in 18 Years

A Key Manufacturing Gauge Just Saw Its Biggest One-Month Decline in 18 Years

The closely watched Empire State Manufacturing Index, which gauges the sentiment of New York area manufacturers, fell to a negative 8.6 reading in June from a positive 17.8 just one month earlier. The 26.4-point drop was the largest ever decline in the survey series, which was launched in 2001. “Bottom line, and I’ll be blunt, this number was terrible,” said Peter Boockvar, Chief Investment Officer at Bleakley Advisory Group. “It’s hard not to think this is all about tariffs and what it is doing to business confidence. We don’t even need actual tariffs, just the threat of them now on anything and anybody to address issues that have nothing to do with trade also adds a whole new layer of uncertainty.” The Empire State Manufacturing Index, compiled by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, is an aggregate indicator of company plans to expand or contract.

 

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