February 2018 Chicago Purchasing Managers Barometer: New Orders Fall To Six-Month Low

The Chicago Business Barometer declined but remains firmly in positive territory.

Analyst Opinion of Chicago PMI

The results of this survey continue to correlate to district Federal Reserve manufacturing surveys – and generallly aligns with the overall trend of the ISM manufacturing survey.

Expections this month from Bloomberg / Econoday were 62.0 to 66.8 (consensus 65.0) with the actual at 61.9. A number below 50 indicates contraction. Jamie Satchi, economist at MNI Indicators stated,

Disruptive weather conditions this month and large promotions at the back-end of last year appear to have weighed on demand and output in February, but despite the Barometer’s broad-based decline activity remains upbeat. That said, a large proportion of firms are anxious about the cost of input materials, and warn they could pass on these higher costs to consumers if inflationary pressures do not abate.

From ISM Chicago:

The MNI Chicago Business Barometer fell 3.8 points to 61.9 in February, down from 65.7 in January, to the lowest level since August 2017. Business activity continued to expand in February, although at a softer pace than in January. All five of the Barometer components receded on the month, but despite a second straight monthly fall, the Barometer was still up 8% on last February and above the 2017 average of 60.8. As in January, firms reported a slower pace of both incoming orders and output in February. The New Orders indicator fell to a six-month low, contributing the most to the Barometer’s decline, while the Production indicator also fell in February, down to a level last seen lower in September. Despite trending lower recently, however, both indicators remain elevated relative to recent years.

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The From ISM Chicago is important as it is a window into the national ISM reports which will be issued shortly. When you compare the graph below of the ISM Manufacturing Index against the Chicago PMI (graph above) – there is a general correlation in trends, but not necessarily correlation in values.

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Author: Travis Esquivel

Travis Esquivel is an engineer, passionate soccer player and full-time dad. He enjoys writing about innovation and technology from time to time.

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