The data issued by the Federal Reserve on Friday showed that the U.S.
industrial production increased 0.4 percent m-o-m in March, following an
upwardly revised 0.2 percent m-o-m increase (from unchanged m-o-m) in February.
That was the third straight monthly rise in industrial output.
Economists had forecast industrial production would advance 0.2 percent
m-o-m in March.
According to the report, the March gain in total industrial production reflected
a jump in output of utilities (+8.4 percent m-o-m) that was offset by declines
in manufacturing production (-0.5 percent m-o-m) and mining output (-0.5
Meanwhile, capacity utilization for the industrial sector edged up 0.2
percentage point m-o-m to 79.8
percent in March, its highest level in four months. That
was 0.8 percentage point above economists’ prediction of 79.0 percent and 0.1
percentage point above its long-run (1972-2022) average.
In y-o-y terms, the industrial output increased 0.5 percent in March, following
an upwardly revised 0.9 percent advance (from +0.3 percent) in the previous
month. That was the weakest gain since March 2021 (0.5 percent).
For the first quarter as a whole, the U.S. total industrial production went
up 0.2 percent y-o-y.